Tag Archives: Galway Bay

A ghost from Christmas Past

RTÉ  released a magical seasonal treasure from the Archives. The short film was first broadcast as a segment on the programme ‘Davis at Large’ in 1984. Filmed on the smallest of the Gaeltacht Aran Islands, Inis Oírr, it features Saintí’s visit to the island’s children at the local airstrip. Among the children to speak on camera is local singer MacDara Ó Conaola (then 6 years of age).

Notably, the film was the directorial debut of Declan Lowney who went on to direct Moone Boy, Alan Partridge Alpha Papa and Father Ted. The opening titles of this ground breaking satirical comedy feature an aerial view of Inis Oírr and the Plassy ship wreck on the so-called fictional Craggy Island.

Watch the footage of ‘Davis at Large’ 1984 on the RTE Archive at 

Listen to resident Inis Oírr sean nós singer MacDara Ó Conaola recalling Santa’s visit to Inis Oírr in 1984 in an interview with Ryan Tubridy at 

Ghost of Christmas Past

Ancient Ways

The ancient ways are going

For the old woman knows words

In Gaelic, her grandchildren don’t,

Their Irish, modern, anglicised,

Hers bound to the earth

Carved by it as the rock underfoot.

The currachs like discarded shells

Of black backed beetles

Lie rotting in the sand.

The well-worn paths once woven

Into the landscape by feet

Are now mudded and gouged by tractor

Tyres no longer bordered

By smooth, soft margins,

Once home to wild garlic and primrose.

The Arctic Tern still finds a shelter

As does the Cuckoo and the Swallow

But the Corncrake left long ago.

Grey rock, grey sand, grey sky

Still the same, not yet scarred

But there’s a change in the wind

For the ancient ways are going,

Blowing away.

The ancient ways are going

Poem: Catherine Conneely. Image: JesseJames

 

Inishative with John Shaw-Rimmington

Inish less or inish more
Inish either Inish or
I’m glad I’m back in Inisheer
I think I’ll have a local beer
Inish woman Inish man
On the isles of Aran
The first Irish coming here to live
Really had inishative

Flattish roundish
Start to finish
Upish downish
Outish Inish

Beyond the view beyond the sky
Almost as far as sea can eye
Before my strength and health diminish
I must return once more to Inish

Attractive views here and there
You see a tractor everywhere
Walls of grey
On greenish isle
random walls in feidin style

Mudders here. Children there
Tursty tourists everywhere
You needn’t be a power house
To climb up to the tower house

It isn’t such a real big hastle
To catch a view from yonder castle

It’s worth the trip on the ferry
To Lands of walls of bramble berry

Words and Image: John Shaw-Rimmington