What Happened to 2023?

It was a year of uncertainty, fraught and chaotic. Like many voluntary organisations Fermanagh Writers were caught out by the restructuring of financial institutions post-Covid, and for most of the year we found ourselves without a bank account. Theresa Kane’s one-day exhibition in Ballinamallard, Boxopera, which had originally been planned for late summer, eventually launched … Continue reading “What Happened to 2023?”

What Yet May Be

When Michael Faraday was demonstrating the newly-discovered effects of electromagnetic induction, one of his audience voiced his concerns. This business of magnets and copper wire was interesting, certainly, but what possible practical use could it have? ‘Sir,’ Faraday replied, ‘of what use is a new-born baby?’


They are here Still. They have no choice. Was there a prayer Unspoken or unheard? A voice in fear or anger, or despair? For still you find The silence is not dead The wind is not the wind.

The Things that Make for Peace

It’s been a busy Autumn, as various social groups have returned from their long hibernations and diaries are once more filling up.

The Song of the Scythe

My grass had grow almost untouched for the best part of three years. In places, the grass roots were so densely entangled that pulling on one plant might roll up a whole section like rotting underlay. It had broken my lawnmower long ago. A local farmer with a brush cutter cleared the part visible from … Continue reading “The Song of the Scythe”

The Spirit of the Place

For the ancient pagans, they say, every sacred place was haunted by a familiar spirit – the genius loci – something less than a god but equally uncanny: some dryad, naiad, elf or goblin. Dinnseanachas or placelore was one of the earliest forms of Irish vernacular writing. Every hill, river and road, sacred or not,  … Continue reading “The Spirit of the Place”

The Edge of Strangeness

What makes a place familiar? What causes that feeling that you have left your home ground?  I can feel the change near the Ulster border more than on the political one, yet parts of Leitrim seem like home to me, and parts of Cavan do not. Rivers and loughs do not divide but rather unite … Continue reading “The Edge of Strangeness”

Loughshore Lines

Loughshore Lines was the brainchild of Ken Ramsey, who proposed that Fermanagh writers should invite creative responses to The Erne and the surrounding landscape, to include public performances in Ballyshannon, Cavan and Enniskillen. Some of the writers are well known, but some are published here for the first time.

Smiles to Go Before I Weep

The sun always rises after a storm writes Rodney Edwards of the Impartial Reporter on the back cover of this anthology. Nobody knows this better than Mary McElroy. This brilliant book is a testament to that. Yet, as the title suggests, the truth that Mary knows is more complex. Wishing for the sun will not … Continue reading “Smiles to Go Before I Weep”