The Heelers Diaries

the fantasy world of ireland's greatest living poet

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

Saturday, February 04, 2012

the truth about snurds and blurgles

"The people at this funeral can be divided into two groups," I inform Doctor Barn during intermission. "Members of the first group embrace me with a hug and a kiss. Those in the second group brush past without so much as a nod or a wink."
"Why do you think that is?" wonders Doctor Barn.
"The first group haven't read my blog," I reply humbly.

reunited in heaven

Friday, February 03, 2012


Quaffing coffees.
My cousin Georgina says: "Your father was never much into institutionalised religion."
My eyes widen.
"Why Georgina, that's just unholy," I tell her warmly. "Even by your usual high standards of unholiness, what you've said there is unholy. And you know it. My father spent his entire life absolutely committed to the moral, spiritual and intellectual defence of the Catholic Church as the church founded by Christ to serve God in human history. He just wasn't always that interested in going to mass..."

what hath god wrought

confucius he say

Stephen Hawking finds in atoms the cosmic causalities he has already hidden there.

Thursday, February 02, 2012

spiritual healing

The solemnest moment.
The entire congregation in the church files past the front pew exchanging condolences with each beareaved family member.
I am in an altered state of deep spirituality.
Lost in a meditation on the ephemeral nature of mortal existence.
Not many good looking women at this funeral, I muse to myself absent mindedly.
A vision materialises in front of me.
Shapely, shiney and with superb blonde special effects.
My handsome jaw drops.
"I'm Shona," she says.
I'll bet you are, thinks me.
"I saw you in a play once," she says shaking my hand.
My handsome jaw stays dropped.
Have to say something.
"Gurgle queep," I managed.
Not my best comment as comments go, but I think I just about carried it off.
"You were very good," she said.
"Woggle," I managed.
Scholars of the work of Lord Baden Powell will be well aware that a woggle is the small leather circlet which cub scouts use to secure their neckerchiefs.
The girl was still standing there.
My jaw was also still firmly dropped.
Abruptly the Chief Executive of Allied Irish Banks appeared beside her.
"This is my daughter James," he said informatively, hustling her away.
He was right too.

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

lying in state

The Dad's coffin was in the hall.
Doctor Barn stood beside it alone, taking a last look at his father's face.
Stillness reigned.
My brother took his time to savour the memories.
The mood was broken by a series of muffled sounds rising apparently from the interior of the coffin.
Scraping, panting and a gasp or two.
Doctor Barn stepped back, ashen faced.
The noble Heelers emerged from beneath the coffin and began brushing himself down.
Doctor Barn stared at his brother.
It was a Kodak moment.
"Jim," said the goodish doctor when the power of speech had returned, "if you don't mind me asking... What were you doing under the coffin?"
A fair question.
"A corrupt cop passed through the hall a minute ago looking to express his sympathies," explained Ireland's dustiest living poet. "And I didn't want to shake hands with him."

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

death notices

Evening at the Chateau.
A handsome poet is quaffing coffee in the kitchen.
Enter my sister Marie stage left.
"Will I put the Dad's death notice in the Irish Independent or the Irish Times?" she asks me.
"I don't have a horse in that race," I answer.
"What do you mean?" sez she.
"They're both anti Catholic newspapers," quoth me. "The Irish Times wishes to impose Bolshevick dicatorship on Ireland, disguised as something it calls atheistic humanism. The Irish Independent seeks to establish the neo feudal worship of its proprietor Tony O'Reilly as the new State religion. If it was up to me the Dad's death notice would go in the Curate's Diary and nowhere else."
"James we need people to know about this," sez she.
"That's why I'm going to trust your judgement, Sister," quoth me. "And if I pop my clogs anytime soon and you get lumbered with organising my funeral, just bear in mind that I don't want any death notice in any anti Catholic rag. I'm including the Daily Mail and RTE in that by the way. I can't for the life of me see why Irish people insist on voluntarily paying a death tax to atheistic abortionist anti Catholic druggie hoor master newspapers every time we die. Why do we still force ourselves to finance the satanic hand that strikes us? I mean I don't want to go casting no aspoyshuns."
The sister sighed.
"Never change," sez she.
"I won't,"quoth me agreeably.
Exit the sister to the garden, and enter the lady millionairess stage right.
The lady millionairess was a lifelong friend of the Dad's.
"James I've got the wording of the death notice here," she informs me. "Will you take a look at it?"
"Whatever you've decided is okay with me," says I.
"But I'd like you to check it all the same," insisteth she.
I read the death notice.
It is good of its type.
Only a single phrase gives me pause.
The phrase comes in the final sentence of the notice listing the Dad's nearest and dearest.
We're all there.
His late wife Lilian, his late son John, the living members of the family, cousins, the lady millionairess herself, other friends, neighbours, etc etc.
But the key part right at the end reads: "... and not forgetting his beloved and constant companion Jess."
A poignant pallor comes into my piercing blue eyes.
A casual reader might be forgiven for thinking Jess was a sexy mistress and not a Wicklow collie sheepdog.
I briefly consider warning the lady millionairess of this possible interpretation.
Then I think: Ah what the hell, let it ride.
"That will do nicely," I tell her.
If you had been there, gentle travellers of the internet, you might have noticed a certain famous fleeting grin playing about my magnificent preraphaelite features.
I think the Dad was smiling too.

Sunday, January 29, 2012


Ron Baines, the Fine Gael parliamentary representative for Kildare South, called to the house.
"I'm sorry about your father," he said, shaking my hand.
"Reopen the Vatican embassy," I replied softly.