Lockdown Creations

Read stories written during lockdown by people cocooning in Co. Kildare. Immerse yourself in these wonderful stories and tales that capture experiences of life lived in Ireland.

Older Voices Volunteering Journal

March 2019 It’s been a few months since I finished my training. I’ve read through my notes a few times and have been in regular contact with Sue. Still, I’m a bit nervous, the day has arrived – first contact. It’s local so chances are I’ve probably met the man before – surprisingly I haven’t.…

Poem 3

– Trish Keane – Midnight shades Midnight shades of blue green reds and a hint of purple to stars of silver in moon lightof soft yellows clouds filled with dark shadows of the mist like rain Bold skys of September air the type that wouldn’t invite you sit down windows closed tightly around not letting…

Poem 2

– Trish Keane – Over fresh fallen pine cones my wheels long to tread Or through the park after night rains fell To see and feel the wind swept trees There leaves bow gentle to soften my face with it’s due To hear birds squabble and sweek The rustle of the long grass a feild…

Poem 1

– Trish Keane – Warm winds blow across my face the soft breeze enveloped around my face Eyes closed and face held high a breath a hug of air for my lungs to refresh them Algiries kicking ins someone near is cutting grass My eyes start to stream as tho I was crying but they…

The Bridge

By Colette Powell Moore Us children sat on the wall at Emersons field looking up and down the street. We all had to be quiet, and not allowed to make noise. Siobhan said her granny heard “The Banshee” the night before. Silently we all turned out heads towards Hinny’s house, with the top half of…

The Letter

Excerpts from a letter written by a friend to my grandmother on 12th November 1941. They were both in their early 60s so were born in 1880. “Have you ever considered what to my mind is the poverty and inferiority of the present day education, not only in the National schools, but also in the…

The Wedding

Weddings are so different now than back years ago. Today a lot of young couples choose to have a Civil Ceremony in a Hotel or a Registry Office as well as the traditional Church Wedding. Turn the clock back 50 years ago, things were different for most of the Irish population. The prospective groom would…

Kildare Cocooners

– Written by Finian Coghlan of the Kildare Nationalist – A Kildare artist is working in conjunction with Older Voices to provide portraits of, and for Kildare cocooners, as they continue to endure the trials of loneliness and isolation. ‘Older Voices’ – a social inclusion initiative of the Council’s LEADER Partnership – which works with…

Phthisis

Bernard was my uncle, aged 32 on 17 th July 1955 when he died, he was the youngest of 10 children had a shop beside the Olympia Theatre, and his cause of death was “Phthisis”. He was not married and his sisters cared for him in their home in Dublin. As a child when I…

The Prayer Book

I received my first prayer book on the day of my First Communion in 1958, and don’t know where it is now, but can see it as clearly as if it was yesterday, it had a white cover and I was so proud of it. I have many old prayer books in my house now…

The Measure of a Man

– By Colette Moore – John Reilly of the Hill (as he was always referred to) was a first cousin of Daddy’s. Everyone in the town of Portarlington would say “you could set your watch by John Reilly”. John lost his beautiful young son Paddy at a very tender age. While Paddy was very ill,…

The Telegram

It was a summer evening, I was about 5 years old and standing on a chair at the sink in the back kitchen beside my mother at the sink, she was preparing a salad for our tea and was showing me how to peel the shell of the boiled egg and we were laughing as…

The Emergency

We didn’t call it the Second World War, we called it “The Emergency” and it was during this time that “RATIONING” was introduced in Ireland. Every family in Southern Ireland received a half yearly book of coupons which had different lettering for the individual items each household bought. In Northern Ireland the rationing was not…

A Shattered Peace: The Bombing of Campile

By Loretta Kenny Campile is a village in South Wexford. In the early twentieth century a train station was opened as part of the construction of the Rosslare to Waterford railway. The Shelburne Co-operative Agricultural Society opened in 1919, followed by the opening of the Campile Creamery in 1927. The village at this stage was…

Hector Grey

A shopping trip to Dublin with my mother was always a very exciting day in my childhood especially at Christmas. Arnotts, Boyers, Clearys were her favourite shops especially their Summer and January Sales days. I, as a small child loved a trip into Woolworths and then down to Hector Greys. I remember pleading with her…

Words of Wisdom

By Michéal De Paor Words of Wisdom (Part One)I was born two doors away in the County Hospital in Portlaoise and lived on what was called the corner of the Block. This prestigious location meant that the Jail was on the far side of the road, while St Fintan’s Mental Hospital and the Morgue were…

Ballinrobe 1880

A letter in the Irish Times by General Gordon described the prevailing condition of the Irish peasantry in terms uncannily reminiscent of other witnessed over two centuries. He found them “patient beyond belief….loyal, but at the same time broken spirited and desperate, living on the verge of starvation in places where we would not keep…

My Transistor Radio

You remember when there were no mobile phones, and our phones were black heavy objects with a front circular dial, which were situated on a small table in the hallway. Then in the 90s our children, nieces and nephews started arriving in with this new device called a “Mobile Phone”. Overnight our means of communication…

29th June 2020-Phase 3 of “Lockdown”

I was so excited, I would be able to visit my son, daughter-in-law and 3 littlegrandchildren all under 8. They live in Claremorris, and I had last seen them onthe 2nd March, had chatted on Face time, but it’s not the same. Up early, made a batch of queen cakes with butter icing, as all…

Ireland V Spain 8th April 1964

By Michéal De Paor My excited thoughts as I woke centered on going to my first Football International match, Ireland V Spain in the European Nations Cup. Although, I had been to the Leinster Football Final in 1963 and almost cried all the way home as Dublin beat Laois, today was different as I would…

The Pub

By Loretta Kenny I was born in 1957 in a small rural village in Co. Wexford. My parents ran a fairly large business which consisted of a Grocery Shop, a Mill and a Public House. I lived over this business until I was nearly twelve years of age and I would like to share with…

My May Altar

By Colette Moore The sadness overwhelms me, even though I’d always been told I’d had the “gift of the gab” on this occasion I’m lost for words, not so much lost, but trying to find the right words. I’m sad because such a huge part of my childhood is lost to memory, I’m trying to…

The Mission Mass

By Marie Conlon This special Mass occurred long ago, when a house in the Parish was chosen by the Priest to say Mass in. This was a practice that had continued from the Penal times when the celebration of Mass was forbidden. For the family, it was an honour to be chosen but did involve…

The Wake “Sorry for Your Trouble”

By Marie Conlon The Wake was a custom where mourners gathered in the persons own hometo keep vigil over their dead until they were buried. It was an important part ofthe grieving process and was seen as a chance to celebrate the dead person’slife and to offer condolences and support to the family. There were…

Looking Forward to Knock

– By Colette Moore – Old Mrs. Quinn stood in the kitchen. Strands of her dull white hair falling from the bun she neatly placed in it earlier this morning. Her shawl loosely draped from her shoulders. In her hand she held an old envelope, from that envelope she took a note and laid it…

The Big Freeze 1947

By Marie Conlon The early part of January 1947 had been unusually mild and the Sean Lemass was glad as the Autumn had been very wet and a lot of the turf hadn’t been saved and lay wet in the bogs. The 2nd World War was still on and had affected our imports of coal,…

Memories from Donard Co. Wicklow: Rural Electrification of Ireland

By Urcela Nolan Rural electrification was the greatest thing that happened in rural Ireland. Growing up in Donard before electricity came to our village we used oil-lamps.They had to be filled with paraffin oil, a wick had to be trimmed, and the Globehad to be polished. If we broke the globe, we had to cycle…

My First Memory

By Michéal De Paor At Halloween in 1957 or 58, as a young child, I accompanied my father and Joe O’Grady, who was then the Laois County Engineer on a journey from Portlaoise to St Jarleth’s College in Tuam to bring my eldest brother home for the Halloween break. As I was only 4 or…

Family Ties

By Anne Doyle Bang!!! Mam Mam, where are you? We are learning all about the 1916Rising today, did you have any relations in the Rising?, Yes, and he playedsuch a big part in it all that they wrote a book about him. “Yes yes yes that’sbrilliant, I bet no one else will have as good…

Broken Promise

– By Micheál De Paor – As the end of the Nineteenth Century approached, a headstrong teenager, Maggie Leyden, from Newport Co Mayo sailed to the US to join up with and marry her love Stephen Gibbons. Maggie’s parents strongly disapproved of her actions and missed her greatly. Within a few years a Telegram arrived…

Farming in the 1920 and 1930 Period

– By Maureen Cusack – In the early part of the 20 th century agriculture and the farming population dominated the rural economy. When the 20th century opened rural Ireland was still a society of tenant farmers, but by 1920s this had been changed by a series of land acts from 1880 to 1903 and…

The Coat

– By Dorothy Clinton – “Life is strange”, she said to herself. She used to have a good memory, now she was uncertain of it. She was uncertain of a lot of things, there were times when she was not sure of who she was herself. Then she smiled and thought of the coat. Times…

Dare to Be Yourself

– By Bridie Corrigan – I would like to introduce you to two formidable women each in their own way. The first, my mother Nell Barrett R.I.P. and the second my Aunt Kate Brennan R.I.P. They are both on their way to visit a brother in England. I was tagging along as general factotum (which…

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