Manage episode 301011306 series 2711022
When I was at primary school my nickname was Addies. It didn’t last beyond Saint Finian’s for some reason. My brothers, or at least some of them, had the same moniker. I don’t know about the girls but years later I discovered our Gearóid’s old school books had Addies scribbled on them. Different generation. Same nickname.
In prison nicknames were common. Cleaky, Floorboards. Honkytonks, The Dosser, Jack the Giant, Rigor Mortis, Shoulders, Ted the Red, Dickiemints and so on. The origin of some of these nicknames is amusing. For example Floorboard’s surname was Rafter. He was a great friend of mine. Rigor Mortis spent a lot of time stretched out on his bunk. He also was a good friend. I wonder where Swinger or Jock McBride or Goose or Cheeser’s nicknames came from.
I normally try to keep my private life private. But let me make this small exception. Colette and I were married fifty years ago this week. Fifty years!
Eilish Rooney very kindly sent us her Ballymurphy Poems. Eilish is one of the stalwarts of our community and educational sectors. An active citizen in every sense and a wonderful poet. This collection is dedicated to the families of the Ballymurphy Massacre and to another community stalwart Ciaran Cahill. It is all about the massacre. It is also self-financed by Eilish and all donations will go towards the Ballymurphy Massacre Memorial Garden.
Part One takes the reader into the heart of the Ballymurphy Inquest as well as events in the Murph on 9-11 August 1971. Part Two consists of eleven poems. One for each of the victims.
A scathing indictment of Imperialism
Summer is a time for catching up on reading some of the books which have been patiently waiting to be opened. ‘Inglorious Empire’ by Shashi Tharoor is one such. It is particularly relevant as the current crisis in Afghanistan unfolds amid the chaotic and shambolic disengagement of the British and the USA from a country they should never have invaded.
It is a story of Empire and colonialism and of its legacy as told through the experience of India. It is a scathing indictment of British rule in that region – an India which up to 1947 included Bangladesh and Pakistan. That year Britain, as in Ireland just three decades earlier, imposed an arbitrary partition of the sub-continent. Between one and two million died in the conflict that followed and many millions more were uprooted from their homes.