It is some relief, though I am sure, not much good to the relatives, that the missing plane has been partly solved and is believed to “have ended” in the southern Indian ocean. I think that news is better than not knowing at all what happened to it. Of course, nobody will ever know why it went in that direction. It is a nightmare situation in any event and we pray that this kind of disaster will not happen again. One can only imagine the horror of the passengers as it happened.

We must set our minds on nicer and gentler things and so I remind you of the upcoming Michael Hartnett festival. Éigse Michael Hartnett runs from Thursday, April 10th – 12th in Newcastlewest. Poet Theo Dorgan, who knew Hartnett writes “ Éigse Uí Hairtnéide is a kind of miracle, a continuing statement in dark times that we are no mean people, that we are not yet beaten down into the clay; it celebrates imagination and all those who live and work by craft and imagination, but it makes the claim, too, that these riches of the spirit must be available to all, that we enjoy such things as a right of our amplified humanity. Hartnett, a radical democrat if ever there was one, would have approved.” Regretfully, I will miss it myself this year but there is a bit of something for everyone in it. The official Opening by the Cathaoirleach of Limerick County Council, Councillor John Sheehan, will be in Newcastlewest Library at 8pm on Thursday April 10th at 8pm. Presentation of the Michael Hartnett Poetry Award 2014 by Limerick’s new Arts Officer,  Sheila Deegan will be followed by a reading by the winning poet from his/her poetry collection. The Keynote Speaker will be photographer John Minihan on ‘The Silence of the Still’. All this is followed by a weekend of music, dance, poetry. Consider attending one of the events.


Mother’s day is on Sunday. When I was young my only ambition was “to be a mother like Mom” and I’m happy to have achieved that ambition and am grateful for it. I am even more blessed now to be a grandmother which is even nicer with less responsibilities. So I wish everybody a Happy Mother’s Day on Sunday. I take the liberty to include a poem I wrote when the children were young.


Who wants to be a Mum?

 I iron the clothes, I wash the floors

I shine the windows, I polish the doors,

I bake the bread, I make the tea

I stick a plaster on a grazed knee

            Am I mad to be a Mum?


If needed, I’ll help to milk the cows

I hug a child and settle the rows

I weed the garden and mow the lawn

I haven’t even time to yawn

            I must be mad to be a Mum!


I mend the clothes, I sew in patches

I feed the baby, I kiss the scratches

I darn the socks, I get the dinner

Is it any wonder that I’m getting thinner?

Oh, who would be a Mum?


Oh, but I also have to say

When I get a hug it makes my day

And I thank my God that I’ve been born

When I see a smiling face each morn.

            Is it so bad being a Mum?


I’m the first to get told the news

“I love you, Mammy” will clear the blues

And before they hurry out to school

I get that last kiss as a rule.

            Isn’t it lovely being a Mum?


Oh, yes it’s bliss when I can see

Those happy eyes look up at me

And everything seems worth the while

When I look down on that special smile

            Yes, I’m glad that I’m a Mum!