Monthly Archives: October 2013

Some diary entries … September to November 1991

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1/9/91 – I got up at 7 and brought Sean downstairs so that Pauline could get some decent rest. Fortunately, the last day’s athletics from Japan was being shown – I also went out for the paper. Pauline was up around 10.30 – after breakfast the three of us got a bus to Westland Row and a DART to Blackrock. Went to the market, had something to eat, chatted to Yvonne, Nick, and Yvonne’s brother Ronan. Good crack. Bought a beanbag. Pauline fed Sean in the café – her first time in ‘public’. Again it was a beautiful day … Nick said there was loads of signwriting to do if we wanted to … we said no. All our signs in Blackrock have lasted very well. We got a 17 home, and arrived in time for the All-Ireland Hurling Final – Tipperary 1–16, Kilkenny 0–15. Not a great game, but I was glad that Tipp won. I made a fry for dinner and we stayed in for the evening.

2/9/91 – I was extremely tired, Sean having made a lot of noise again during the night. And tired all day at work … When I got home in the evening there was a paper and a letter from Joyce. I should be getting a book manuscript soon … I was too tired to start the freelance work. Very glad to be getting it though … Continue reading

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Filed under Death, Ireland, Memories

Reality, religion, ‘proof’ and so on

I came across this piece which I wrote on a blogsite some time ago …

A lot of the online argument in this general area tends to be sterile and futile, largely (in my opinion) because of the aggression with which certain people try to slap down anything that’s ‘unscientific’. Personally, I have no religious or quasi-religious belief that I try to convince anyone else of. In fact, I have no strong belief of this sort at all, and no interest in trying to undermine or ridicule the beliefs of others.

As I see it, reality exists irrespective of our beliefs about it. Our senses and our minds are limited, and probably not fit for the purpose of understanding everything. Science can reveal a lot, but it cannot fully reveal reality because it is an aspect of our limited minds and is therefore limited, whereas reality is not. Science is like a torch … useful for finding our way round a cave; useless when we step out into the sunlight. Continue reading

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Filed under Philosophy of life, Psychology, Religion

Three years

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I put this on Facebook on Thursday – the third anniversary of Sean’s death.

Thank you so much to everyone who sent messages and good wishes for Sean’s anniversary today. Thanks also to people who called to the house and spent time with us. We had a few drinks and Sean’s friends talked about him a lot, and laughed and told stories – Pauline and I love this kind of thing. They told us that if Sean walked into a crowded room and the only available chair was broken, or just a box, Sean could make it seem so comfortable that soon someone would want to swap with him. That he was a peacemaker; that he always gave good advice; that he made sure his female friends were treated properly by their boyfriends; that once Sean arrived everyone knew it was going to be a good day or night; that he had strong opinions on music, politics, sport and everything else, but never held a grudge or cared if people disagreed; that he brought people together, and they have drifted apart since he’s been gone. A lot of people looked up to Sean, a lot of people listened to him, and a lot of people loved him. It’s good for us to be reminded of this.

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Filed under Death, Ireland, Memories

Six Feet Under

Six-Feet-Under

Pauline and I have watched all five seasons (63 episodes) of Six Feet Under in the past few months, having seen the series first when it came out in 2001–2005. Susanna watched many of the episodes with us; I think Sean would have loved it (he was too young to watch when it was first aired).

To me, it’s the best TV show I have ever seen (Pauline feels the same way). Admittedly the various blockbuster series of the past few years passed us by, but I very much doubt that any of them would surpass Six Feet Under in my mind. The writing and acting are superb; the complexity and humanity of the characters come across believably and often beautifully, and the fact that death is ever present only accentuates the value and vividness of life, in all its imperfection. Music (such as the highly evocative main theme), dreams and fantasy offset or accentuate the grittiness. Continue reading

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Filed under Art, Film

Some diary entries … December 1991 to February 1992

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2/12/91 – Sean was asleep at first in his cot, but has now awoken and I’ve brought him downstairs. His teeth have been bothering him lately, so there may be some squalls. Later: Sean was good.

5/12/91 – Went to supermarket and cooked pasta with veg sauce, some of which I succeeded in getting into Sean.

6/12/91 – I have a day’s leave, and am minding Sean. Pauline is at a training course in Harold’s Cross for the job. It’s 1 o’clock, and so far it hasn’t been too bad; just the odd bout of crying. He went to sleep at 12.30 but woke at 12.35. I’ve been giving him breast milk that Pauline left. Later: Sean and I went to Dundrum, him in the pram and me on foot. Borrowed Francis Stuart’s Pillar of Cloud and a book of Garrison Keillor stories in the library. He screamed a bit when we got home; I gave him half a rusk and some fennel drink. Pauline arrived and made a big fuss of him – she’d never been away from him for so long. Continue reading

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Filed under Death, Ireland, Memories

Solid Gold

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This is a new song that I have written. To listen, please click here:

SOLID GOLD

In times that I look back upon
I see the golden light that shone
But that you would soon be gone
There was no way of knowing

If I had the choice of things to do
With anybody that I knew
I would like to sit with you
And watch the water flowing

But the river bends
And our absent friends
Have moved on out of sight
Into the gentle night

When our yearning blends
With words the spirit sends
The song we sing for them
Is not a requiem
The love we hold
Is solid gold

When our hearts are open wide
Connection cannot be denied
Love will bridge the great divide
And break the chains that bind us

In this world of flesh and bone
We all will reap what has been sown
When we roll away the stone
That’s hiding what’s inside us

You and I are one
Beneath the moon and sun
Just like those olden days
Seen through a golden haze

In the market of
Our pure undying love
The things we sacrifice
Will go to pay the price
What’s bought and sold
We have been told
Is solid gold

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Filed under Ireland, Memories, Philosophy of life