Water Dog at Poulaphouca

When I was young in the 1950’s we lived in Dublin but every summer we decamped for two months to a caravan near Blessington, in a field beside Poulaphouca Lake. There I had the freedom to roam with my dog Pickles. He was a very special dog. His mother was a pure bred Scotty and

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The salmon of knowledge in the town of Athy.

Fado, fado, when i was a young one, I walked daily, hail, rain or snow, on the banks of the river barrow near Athy, in Co. Kildare. Walking the boundaries of Laoise and Kildare, the same route as my mother and grandmother had done before me. I still walk this beautiful river today. Early summer

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The Silent Shorebird

Julia was a strange girl. At least most of sixth class thought so. She enjoyed social media like the rest but her occasional messages were about issues in which they had little or no interest. To keep in with her class mates she found herself wading through commentary about body image, shopping bargains and celebrity

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The River and The Sea

There is a certain point in any conversation with a local, where my lack of knowledge of a particular person or place makes it obvious that I am not a native of these parts. “Where are you from?” “Galway.” “What part?” “Salthill.” “You must miss the sea…” Of course, I do miss the sea –

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The Legend of Lough Talt

Lough Talt is a beautiful lake located about 12km west of Tubbercurry. The lake is used for the town’s water supply and over the past few years has become embroiled in a battle between the water supply need’s of the town and the habitat needs of a small snail which inhabits the lake’s shoreline. The

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The Lost Cygnet

One beautiful spring day two cygnets were born on a sunny swamp of Lough Derg, just outside the tiny village of Dromineer. “Can we look at them please!”, asked four older baby swans. “Not yet” their mother replied. Every swan was eager to meet the new-born chicks, especially Smoke, their father. One day passed and

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The Peilistude

The village was small but served the hinterland well and it had a lovely bridge where you crossed the water and it was here that I grew up in a house that sat to the village side of the river, a beautiful source of fresh water for our farm. This place was alive with wild

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The Ghosts of Clonea

Night was closing in, smothering us in darkness. I sat on the old, rickety bench watching the fire twist and swirl in a never-ending dance. I held my marshmallow out on a skewer and waited until it was brown. I picked it off and plopped it in my mouth savouring its warmth and softness as

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The Holy Sea

Growing up beside the Irish Sea in South County Dublin, it was not surprising that as a child I viewed the sea as something special. My mother brought us children down to Sandycove harbour every sunny morning of our childhood summers for a swim, she would bring a flask of coffee and we would play

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The Day of the Dobharchu

Grace Mc Laughlin left the small cottage she shared with her husband, Traolach, close to the shore of Glenade Lake. The air shimmered with the expectancy of another splendid September day. The weather had been unseasonably warm for the past week or so; azure sky and an intense sun that suggested mid-July more than late

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The Death of Fergus Mac Róich

The death of the great Fergus mac Róich, former King of Ulster occurred when he was bathing with his consort Queen Medb in a lake on Mag n’Aí . Medb’s husband, the king Ailill spied the two of them together and even though Medb famously chose Ailill for his lack of envy, a wave of

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The Enchanted River

Once a long time ago, there was a river that flowed down the mountain. This river was special. It was special because it filled the air with an orange scent. But that wasn’t the only reason it was special. All the animals that lived in the river were magical. There was a town a few

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