by Peg Prendeville

I admire people who make the best of a situation, no matter what it is. One of the positives of the Covid Lockdown was the way many people turned it to their advantage. I am talking of all the singers and entertainers who were made redundant overnight at the end of March. Thankfully, many of them have taken to doing live shows on Facebook, allowing us all to hear their lovely songs in the comfort of our own homes. Some advertise their CDs and sell them online and fair play to them. It is one way of selling their products and they are entitled to that; nobody is forced to buy. Over the months I have enjoyed Elle Marie O’Dwyer, Daniel O’Donnell, Fergal Flaherty, Seán Keane while also enjoying the music and requests of George Langan and Joe Harrington. Well done to you all. Seán Keane has counted the days since he set foot on a stage. On Monday (as I write these lines)  it was 158 days, but these artists have shortened the time and made it more enjoyable.

It was lovely, recently, to see Bridie Murphy, Photographer, get a whole page in the Limerick Leader, with an account of how she got into photography after retiring from teaching. It is great to see people motivated to take on another career in life rather than sitting back waiting for something to happen. Well done to Bridie, who happens to be my sister. I am blessed with talented sisters; my sister Gerardine who lives in the UK writes some great poems, if I say so myself. I do not mean to boast – merely to give credit where credit is due. I copied this from her FB page. As with all poetry it has to be read aloud to really appreciate it.  I hope you enjoy it.



He retired to the garden
A working man, who used spade and shovel,
Pen and ink, with equal skill.

The garden brought its own thrills
Wet weather deepened the invite;
gentle wet mist
exuding moistness of fresh earth.

Healthy as a hare he was!
Earth’s biomes forever caressing worried brows
His straight furrows brought order to a troubled head
A head of losses, children and bills.

Dig another drill,

Plant a cabbage there.

One bought from the Yank back in Tralee
A *gabháil of planters for a song
30 in it, instead of 24!
The Yank was a generous man.

Each plant he considered a blessing
And planted those blessings in prayer
In tune with God and the land.

Abundant cabbages, carrots, onions, scallions.
Leeks needed much water.
Use that space for strawberries;
Beans and peas he grew with ease
Knew the stakes, positioned with care.

Blackcurrants hogged the corner
Summer jam for the daughters
Rhubarb came good, as well it should
Layered generously with dung
From the cows he lived among.

He’d pull weeds from drills
With consummate skill.
Placed onions near carrots
To keep away maggots
Knew each piece of soil
Which he pleasurably toiled.

That garden pulsed his heart
His paradise on this earth.


(*gabháil – armful. Pronouced: gwaall)     ©GerWhite2020