Sunday, October 19, 2014

The House That Fell In Love

The story, The House That Fell In Love by Daniel Vlasaty caught my eye this morning

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Baptism and A Taste for Winter


     I ASKED HOW LONG the immersion would last, though I’d seen it dozens of times.
“No more than three seconds,” my father said. “You’ll be fine.”
In the cold water, his grip on my shoulder was light; he had never touched me so tentatively. I opened my eyes and they burned; I closed them and saw my father standing by the linen closet. “Don’t forget to bring a towel,” he’d said the night before. “Take the softest one we have.” My father, beaten with a belt constantly as a boy, fed bowls of ketchup soup when that was all they had: Where had he learned such gentleness? When he hit me, he sought my permission first: Do you know why I’m doing this?
Out of love, I had learned to say, which was the same as saying, Go ahead.
This love could take your lungs, I thought. Let me up.

A Taste for Winter

   IT ALWAYS BEGINS with the same scene—his long white fingers wrapped around my short black hand. It’s February in Geneva and we’re walking on Cour St-Pierre toward his Great-Aunt Beatrice’s home. Snowflakes fall unhurriedly. They remind me of our long nights in Paris. She is very rich. She will leave me everything when she dies, he says.
Inside Aunt Beatrice’s dark flat, her frail hand clenches the ball of a mahogany walking stick. 
She is seated as she eyes me up and down. They speak in French and I try to intuit their meaning.
Elle m’a donné dix bons jours. She gives me . . . has given me, ten good days, he says.
Si vous trouvez du miel, mangez-en juste assez. If you find honey, eat just enough, she says.
The room smells of mint tea and wax. I am not asked to sit down.

You can read more excellent short stories here on the Narrative website

Sunday, October 05, 2014

Irish Literary Journals

Thought I'd put together a list of the Irish literary journals, both print and online, that are out there. And the list is a mighty one. I will add to it as I find more journals. If you know of any let me know.

The Moth Magazine
The Moth is a quarterly arts and literature magazine featuring poetry, short fiction and art by writers from both home and abroad. To find out more about The Moth visit:

The Caterpillar 
A children's literary magazine that is published by The Moth. It features art, poetry and short fiction for 7-12 year olds.

Cyphers Magazine
Cyphers Magazine claim to fame is that it's Ireland's longest running literary journals published in 1975. Cyphers publishes poetry, fiction, short fiction, graphic art and reviews by many distinguished writers and artists.

The Penny Dreadful
Now on its fourth issue The Penny Dreadful hails from Cork. It's all grown up now. It started off as a DIY zine and now it's a beautifully produced print journal. So far it has published some top quality writing. Check them out here:

Irish Pages: A Journal of Contemporary Irish Writing is a literary magazine and comes out bi-annually. Irish Pages publishes·poetry, short fiction, essays, creative non-fiction, memoir, essay reviews, nature-writing, translated work, literary journalism, and other autobiographical, historical, religious and scientific writing of literary distinction.

The Shop
Sadly it is no longer with us. It was a fine poetry print journal

Southword is another fine Cork based publication. They used to publish in print but changed direction and now offer their issues online. Southword features poetry, fiction and reviews.

The Stinging Fly
The Stinging Fly has been around for sixteen years and continues to publish top notch writing. It publishes three times a year, the magazine provides a forum for the very best new Irish and international prose and poetry.·

Wordlegs was an online publication that published short stories, fiction and poetry. Sadly it is no longer publishing issues though you can still read all their back issues here:

Icarus has been publishing creative writing by students, staff and alumni of Trinity College since 1950. The magazine is published three times every academic term

The Dublin Review is a quarterly magazine of·essays,·reportage,·autobiography,·travel writing,·criticism and·fiction. The magazine is presented in book form

Crannóg is a Galway based magazine published by Galway writers workshop three times a year, in February, June and October. Crannóg publish poetry and short

Revival is a Limerick poetry journal published quarterly by the non-profit organisation Revival Press.·

The South Circular is a quarterly e-journal of short stories. Its first issue was published on 2012. It's available to download from for just €3.00
Sixteen is an online magazine that aims to use the 1916 centenary that publishes new work based on the 1916 Easter Rising. They are interested in how Ireland has changed in the last 100 years and how the events of that week in 1916 have shaped, if at all, the nation today.

ESC zine publishes both online and off. The editors enjoy off-kilter fiction, poetry, illustration, typographic design and photography. Visit here

Tramp Press is an independent publishing company.

Silver Apples Magazine is an Irish ezine. Looking for new and emerging writers. Poetry, short fiction, reviews, plays, comics and illustration. 

The Green Book is aimed at a general readership and published twice-yearly, The Green Book features commentaries, articles, and reviews on Irish Gothic, Supernatural and Fantastic literature. Check them out here
Boyne Berries
Boyne Berries is a Meath based poetry and fiction journal published by The Boyne Writers group.

gorse is a gorgeous twice-yearly print journal. Check out

thefirstcut is a online bi-monthly prose and poetry journal.

Three Monkeys Online
Three Monkeys Online is a free current affairs, arts and original fiction magazine, produced by writers in Ireland, Italy, Spain and the UK.

The Bohemyth
The Bohemyth is an online literary journal. It publishes weekly issues of short fiction and flash fiction pieces as well as artwork.

Outburst is a monthly ezine that publish poetry, short stories from new writers.·

Roadside Fiction
Roadside Fiction is an edgy quarterly online journal that publishes short stories and photography.

The Scum Gentry
The Scum Gentry is a darkly-comic Irish arts, news and media website that publishes a wide range of literary and journalistic content as well as hosting sections devoted to visual art, video and animation, and original music.

The Poetry Bus
Publishes poetry and art in print. It also comes with a CD with some of the poems read and music. PB started as a weekly writing task and developed into something bigger.

An online contemporary journal from NI / Ireland. Publishes fiction, plays, reviews and interviews

Baby Beef 
Is a DIY print zine from Dublin that features poetry, short fiction and art.

The Runt
The Runt is a print zine features short stories, poetry, articles and artwork.

Abridged is a print poetry/art magazine from Derry.

Bare Hands Poetry
An online poetry and art journalv

Emerald Bolts
Emerald Bolts was an independent platform for flash fiction from Ireland and the rest of the world. You can review the archives here.

Poem Pigeon
Poem Pigeon is a free service for storing and sharing poems.

Monday, September 01, 2014

The First Time I Saw You

Here's a poem I'm working on at the moment. The theme was set by a google writers' group I'm with. The brief being: The first time I saw you. I'm also posting the edit I did for the group.

Draft One


We built our house
on love and rock.
We built a room
in our hearts
to keep you.

We flicked
through name book
after name book
For a boy:
Alan, Christopher,
and Martin
For a girl:
Luna, Claire,
and Esther.

But you arrived
flash pan quick
with beak
and claws.
Your tawny
hid our tears.

Last night
the moon
was full
as a glass
of milk.
A dog
in the rubbish
as we searched
in your eyes
for ways
in which
could feed
you the sun.

we are
your claws
our hearts.
The moon
your base.
You say:
Feather and blood
will merge.
Bone and beak
will shatter
our eyes.

Draft Two


We built our house
on love and rock.
We built a room
in our hearts
to keep you.

you arrived
flash pan quick
with hooked beak
and talons.
Your tawny
hid our tears.

And when
the moon
glass milk full
a dog
in the rubbish
eyes searched
for ways
to feed you.

your talons
our hearts.
The moon is
your base.

You say:
and blood
will merge.
and beak
will shatter
our eyes.