The farmer who dropped by to give unasked-for advice to my friend and his wife clearing their newly bought quarter of an acre of long, abandoned terraces on a steep slope on the island of La Gomera in the Canaries was unequivocal: “Cut it down!”
THE Cork and Kerry mountains were golden with gorse when we drove west last weekend, not Irish dwarf gorse, which displays its glory in September, but French gorse, the tall fellow which Goldsmith described, in The Deserted Village, as “blossom’d furze unprofitably gay ... ”.
SOME puppet show. There are moments when you despair for this country. One of those moments was when I heard Minister for the Arts, Jimmy Deenihan, thus describe on RTÉ Royale de Luxe, the theatre company whose proposed visit finally broke the relationship between Limerick City of Culture’s board and artistic director, Karl Wallace.
Gaelic clans were involved in bloodthirsty ethnic-cleansing when they murdered, raped, pillaged and burned with such brutal ferocity it forced Norman settlers to abandon large parts of rural Cork and cower behind the walls of the city for many years.