Inspiration: The graveyard. An extract.
Updated: Jul 21, 2022
‘Apart from a few hazel trees, the only structures still standing were an ancient ruins of a small, stone chapel. It had been replaced, years ago, with the larger Saint Vincent’s church. The ruins were covered in ivy, with tendrils running through the narrow arched window spaces. Whatever the roof had once been made of was now long gone, had fallen into the aisle of the chapel and was now overgrown and unrecognisable. Somehow, to Jane, it looked beautiful. A ghost of a holy place, guarding the souls of the dead.’
From ‘Coming Home - 1847’ To be published in September, 2022.
I wrote this piece about the churchyard that my character, Jane Keating, visited on her return home to Galway, Ireland in 1847, to find her father's grave.
The description was inspired by the old ruins of a church in the graveyard on a hill overlooking the River Suir. in Crooke, Passage East.
My mother and grandmother are both buried there.
When my children were small, I often walked up around the roads, and visited my mother’s grave. A weathered old mariner, out for his walk, used to pass me coming and going. One day he said to me. ‘There’s nothing here for you.’
He was right. There were only the ghosts of my mother and her family; her mother, uncles and aunts, cousins. But it was peaceful to spend time beside her grave.
My father's and sister's names are recorded there, too. Maybe mine will be, one day.
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