The Heelers Diaries

the fantasy world of ireland's greatest living poet

My Photo
Location: Kilcullen (Phone 087 7790766), County Kildare, Ireland

Saturday, July 29, 2006

cards on the table

There is a tide in the affairs of men which when taken at the flood leads on to great things.
There is another tide which just drowns you.
What are these lights?
I want them to be from God.
Even if it means a warning.
But God hasn't told me they are from him.
Will we ever know?
There is a story in the Bible about a man who dies and goes to hell. He asks for permission to return to warn his family to live a better life.
He is told: "If they will not listen to Moses and the prophets, then they will not listen even if someone returns from the dead."
I take this as an explanation for why God doesn't continually offer us entertainments to prove he exists.
He doesn't serve us.
We serve him.
Yet I have long thought the world is so loaded with miracles that we can see him if we wish.
And sometimes we get miracles.
Not on demand.
But on asking.
There is no pilgrimage without a journey.
A Swiss Bishop called Hans Urs Von Balthazar has spoken of "Teo Dramatik" in relation to the claimed apparitions at Medjurgorge.
God's drama.
A rich cycle of miracle and wonderment crafted into everyday life to show us what in some way we've always known.
God is real.
So that's my cards on the table.
I want the lights to be from heaven.
But we must keep considering the primary possibilities of hoax, or film makers, or natural phenonomena.
We must keep considering them.
Even if on Tuesday night when the lights lit up the sky right in front of me, even if directly confronted with the most spectacular refutation of all those theories, even if, as happened, I shook with delight, and laughed out loud at the sheer ridiculousness of the suggestion that anyone was staging this...

Friday, July 28, 2006


Morning tossing and turning in bed.
My mobile phone keeps buzzing.
I glance at it.
Ten missed calls show on the screen. I check the numbers. All from Naples. Little Bianca does not accept being ignored.
I roll over and groan.
If I ring her now, I'll have to explain why I didn't answer before.
You can understand my dilemma.
At least you can if you know any Neapolitans.
It is afternoon before the mighty Heelers leaves his lair.
Quick jaunt to Newbridge with the Mammy for coffee.
Then on to Dublin.
The city alive with this year's girls.
Trying on their feminity for size. The theatre of life. There is an odd glory to it.
Back home to meet Doctor Jill Allaway and her husband Duggie. Doctor Allaway is a guest at this year's Hopkins poetry festival. Over dinner at The King's Garden in the town of Athy, she poses an interesting question.
"How are you and Miho getting on this year?"
Miho is a charming Japanese professor, also a guest at Hopkins, with whom my name has been romantically linked.
I look at Jill forlornly.
"We're not getting on at all," I say. "She's absolutely inscrutable."
The English doctor asks me what I mean.
"Well," sez I, "I've been trying to scrute her for two years and I'm getting nowhere."
Ah yes.
That old gag.
Stick with me gentle friends of the internet.
Someday we shall laugh again.

Thursday, July 27, 2006


Wednesday 26 July.
I go upstairs just in case.
"Dad," I shout.
The Dad arrives with the video camera.
There is no need for any explanation.
This is the third light phenomenon we've witnessed.
The first was on Friday 23 June.
The second was yesterday.
And now this.
Not circles of light as before.
This time it's... a luminous block of light waxing and waning across the strip of sky where the previous sightings had taken place.
Father and son are momentarily dumbfounded.
"Could it be a laser?" I wonder aloud. "You know those lights that they shine in the sky for advertising."
"For God's sake," says the Dad, "it's miles wide."
The luminescence appears and disappears several times over the next twenty minutes.
It makes no sound.
We film it.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

they're back

Phone call Tuesday evening 10.35pm.
It's business woman Nessa Dunlea looking for the Dad.
The Dad talks to her for a few moments then calls for me.
"Nessa's after seeing something she thinks might be the lights we filmed," he tells me.
We race up the stairs to the window overlooking the fields.
The Dad is still talking to Nessa on the phone.
She tells him she saw six lights over Urquahart's Wood as she drove home. She'd rung us the moment she got in the door.
Literally five minutes ago she'd seen them.
We stand at the window. Nothing to see. Nessa rings off. We wait a few more minutes. Then I go to bring Paddy Pup for a walk.
The Mammy steps out onto the front lawn with me. She points at a star.
"That's what you're seeing," she says.
I chuckle. She goes back into the house.
I notice a brightness in the sky from the direction of the woods.
One light appears. Then another. And another. And another.
They are motionless in the sky.
Brighter than I remembered and with colour in them.
Three of them are in an almost vertical line with the fourth slightly off to the right.
They are more beautiful than I remembered.
I become quite excited and call for the Dad to get his video camera.
He goes to the upstairs window.
I go to the fields.
The Mammy is having a shower and stays in it.
I take a photograph with my Sony camera. It shows something emitting red light.
This will be the only image we have from tonight.
Nothing shows up on the video.
The phenomena last only a short time. I stake out the window for another hour.
Then I take my car and drive out the road for a bit on the off chance of finding something. But no luck.
Back home I do another half hour at the window. Still nothing.
The lights were first seen over a month ago at 2.20am on Friday 23 June 2006.
Nessa saw them tonight Tuesday 25 July 2006 at around 10.25pm. I saw them at 11.05pm.
The mystery deepens...

we are not alone

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

perfect sky

Got home after a hectic day. Could hear Paddy Pup barking a welcome from the house. Stood in the garden. Glanced up. The sky spread out like an ocean. Swirls of cloud edged gold and purple. My mind became still. At last I realised.
We can make the moments of beauty more real than the direst tragedies.
I let the moment flood through me.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Louche Times In The Town Of Newbridge

Sharing a crowded lift with the Mammy and about six other people at the Whitewater Centre in the town of Newbridge.
The Mammy nudges me.
"What are you going to buy in the pharmacy?" she asks in a loud voice.
I'm telling you folks they could hear her at the back.
A mild anarchistic lunacy seized my spirit.
"Condoms," I answered back equally loudly. "I'd say about a dozen should be enough to be going on with."
There was a moment's stunned silence in the crowded lift.
The silence was broken by my venerable mother using the F word and striking me physically.
As the doors opened I endeavoured to rescue my tarnished image.
"Ah Ma," sez I, "the aliens made me do it."