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Inteachán – Book Two: A New Signal 2: 11 ‘A silent voice’

Mac knew that every step he took was counted.Accounted. Noted. Recorded.Strangers would stare at him.Fixing their gaze.Smirking. Mocking.He heard a silent voice.‘You’ll never find her. She’s gone for good.’That may very well be the case,’ replied Mac, ‘but I doubted her once and will not ever again.’Original link
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Inteachán – Book Two: A New Signal 2: 10 ‘Each and every twitten’

Steeling himself for the task, Mac set out the next morning.Armed with an umbrella and his politest manner.Mac walked the crowded streets. Jostled and bothered. Elderly but intent. Miles every day. Following crowds. Peeling back sleeping bags.Every laneway. And alley.Each and every twitten.Original link
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Origins of the word ‘taxi’.

Taxi is a word in regular use that is understood across the globe. When abroad, we may have trouble ordering a pint, finding out where the nearest public convenience is, or when the next bus will arrive; but we can usually recognise a taxi when we see one. A good thing too, with Christmas on the way and the party season in full flow.The word, taxi, is commonly regarded as an abbreviation of taxicab. Various dictionaries will explain that the word derives from the Latin word, taxa, meaning charge, assessment or tax; and taxare, meaning to assess or to tax.  Fast forward to the nineteenth century, when a German entrepreneur named Friedrich Bruhn and associates invented a device, originally ref...
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Inteachán – Book Two: A New Signal 2: 9 ‘What use a man like me?’

What with the weeds and the new visitors, the city swelled, creaking.Crowded. Hostile. Noisome. At night the streets were lined with people trying to sleep. Or choosing not to.Mac watched from his window. A lonely vigil. Scanning the crowds.Hoping that one face from the thousands would speak to him.‘I swore I would protect her,’ he sobbed. ‘What use a man like me?’Original link
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Inteachán – Book Two: A New Signal 2: 8 ‘Inked on skin’

The city had been a lure for visitors since the Vikings.Now a new kind of tourist began to appear. Silent in large groups. Congregating. Accumulating.United beneath a common banner.Written on walls. Printed on shirts. Posted on sites. Attached to messages.Inked on skin.#TheFiveOriginal link
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Inteachán – Book Two: A New Signal 2: 7 ‘People missing people’

And then the posters started.Like petals fallen from the most hopeless of blooms. Handwritten. Photocopied. Badly printed.Missing people. People missing people.Everyone who attended the concert never returned home. Including Inteachán.Though he knew it was helpless, Mac pinned his poster with the rest of them.Original link
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Inteachán – Book Two: A New Signal 2: 6 ‘The Weeds of Priory Hall’

Cities normally return to nature after desertion.Sand can cover office blocks.Shopping centres fall in on themselves.Civic buildings lose all semblance of significance.Sewers clog and silt.Vehicles return their elements to the earth.Or house new tenants.Fountains fall silent.Slowly, troublingly, desperately, inexorably, the weeds of Priory Hall exerted their cosmic influence on the city.Original link
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Mr Apostrophe hangs up his marker pen.

John Richards has been campaigning for the correct use of the apostrophe since 2001. But, at 96, he has decided to bring his Apostrophe Protection Society to an end. A society he created not because there is now a shortage of apostrophes, rather that they keep springing up in all the wrong places.Mr Richards, a former newspaper sub-editor, started his society when he kept seeing the same mistakes cropping up over and over again. He thought it would be of interest to half a dozen or so like-minded people, but he immediately attracted over 500 letters of support. Clearly he wasn’t the only one who thought that ‘cyclist’s dismount,’ ‘potato’s,’ Ladie’s,’ ‘the 1980’s,’ and the like, were crimes ...
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Inteachán – Book Two: A New Signal 2: 5 ‘It started with the weeds’

As he walked across Front Square Mac felt now that the world was only different.He knew the First of the TheFive was here. The disturbance was now unignorable. The weight of this fact caused the world to spin ever so slightly out of kilter.‘I knew this was always going to happen,’ Mac said to himself. And he steeled himself for the worst.It started with the weeds.Original link
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Inteachán – Book Two: A New Signal 2: 4 ‘A Brand-New Loneliness’

Loss hits hard and holds firm and deep and long.After a lifetime of solitude Mac now found himself unable to deal with a brand-new loneliness.There simply is no substitute for presence.‘I’m a selfish cowardly fool,’ he told himself.‘That a man should send a child to stop the darkness.’Original link
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Inteachán – Book Two: A New Signal 2: 3 ‘Ready to swallow an island’

The natural world now meets a new source of energy and the hated hectares of Priory Hall groan beneath the renewed weight of Fallopia japonica, Japanese Knotweed, the curse of the Irish landscape.In tune with the new signal broadcast. Roots and shoots and rhizomes now assemble with new vigour as never before.Ready to swallow an island.Original link
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What’s in a name?

Most writers don’t make a lot of money, especially when they start out. So they need another job to pay the bills. Needless to say, even with another job, they probably don’t have servants, and more time gets taken up with shopping, chauffeuring kids, cooking, cleaning, and general household maintenance. Precious writing time gets nibbled away at by the day to day needs of keeping food on the table, clothes on our backs, and homes relatively free from grime and germs.Consequently, when they do finally sit down to write, writers will find their own ways to make the best use of their time. One of my time savers is to give main characters short names, or abbreviations of long names. It is a lot...
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Inteachán – Book Two: A New Signal 2: 2 ‘Stooky Bill’

According to Wikipedia, Stooky Bill was the name given to the head of a ventriloquist dummy that British television pioneer John Logie Baird used in his 1924 experiments to transmit a televised image between rooms in his laboratory at 22 Frith Street, London. The First of TheFive likes this name.And takes it.Original link
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Inteachán – Book Two: A New Signal 2: 1 ‘Priory Hall’

Priory Hall.A fitting testament to a nation’s greed.At night the wind laps the abandoned buildings like a poisoned tongue probing a mouth of broken teeth.In a flat stripped and rotting. A broken television perched on a chair comes to life.A new signal is available.The First of TheFive.Original link
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Inteachán – Book One: The Song of the NotBeSpeak 1: 50 ‘What would you do?’

What would you do to save the world?How far would you go?All the way?Inteachán estimated that the gap between her and the Rock Star was a long way.She was nine metres above him.The Rock Star turned round to look up at her. He winked.What would you do to save the world?How far would you go?All the way?Inteachánjumped.Original link
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Inteachán – Book One: The Song of the NotBeSpeak 1: 49 ‘Like horses that eat dogs’

Like horses that eat dogs that eat cats that eat mice in the oldest of nursery songs the chain of events now unfolds in a totally logical manner.Inteachán kicked the spanner that loosened the bolt that supported the screen that fell to the stage and stopped the film playing.The Rock Star stopped singing.The crowd began to roar.Original link
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Poetry in Prose

We all think we know what poetry is – or what it isn’t.On the IS side, according to Alexander Pope, poetry is ‘What oft was thought, but ne’er so wellexpressed.”On the ISN’T side, several people still feel that it’s not poetry if it doesn’t rhyme; without rhyme, it’s just prose with pretentious line spacing.What fiction writers and poets have in common is that their basic material is words. Poets sometimes argue that what is distinctive in their work is that every single word has to count, and carry meaning beyond the simple letters on the page. However a fiction writer thinks about words too, and not just which ones best carry the narrative forward. They also want to create an atmosphere, g...
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Inteachán – Book One: The Song of the NotBeSpeak 1: 48 ‘Who wants to join The5?’

‘Listen to me,’ said the Rock Star and the crowd fell silent. The Rock Star spread his arms out wide.‘The5 are here,’ he cried. ‘The5 are really here.’Even though they didn’t know why, the crowd began to clap and cheer. The Rock Star punched the air and whooped.‘Yeah!’ he yelled. ‘They’re really here.’The Rock Star played the crowd now.‘Listen,’ he whispered. ‘Who wants to join The5?’‘We do,’ someone yelled from the front of the stage. ‘We all do.’The Rock Star pulled the Horn from his belt.‘Ladies and Gentlemen,’ he roared. ‘This next song is for all of you.’The Rock Star put the Horn to his lips.[contact-form]Original link
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Inteachán – Book One: The Song of the NotBeSpeak 1: 47 ‘But Inteachán isn’t done’

But Inteachán isn’t done.Why would she be? The world needs a savior after all? And Inteachán is all we’ve got.As the Rock Star threw himself into his next song with renewed vigour Inteachán kicked the spanner with all her tiny might.Nothing.Another kick.Still nothing.One final kick and from somewhere deep within her Inteachán finds the strength to loosen the nut.Original link
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Inteachán – Book One: The Song of the NotBeSpeak 1: 46 ‘When the inevitable darkness comes for you’

Mac reached over and picked up his spectacles. He swung his tired legs out of bed.‘And so the day I always knew was coming is right here now.’Mac looked out into the darkness.‘If you are reading this then you should know that we tried. We really did.’Mac paused and a small tear began to form in his tired eye.‘I suppose it was always the case that an old man and a young child would be no match for all the evil that the world has never seen.’Mac smiled.‘When the inevitable darkness comes for you, please be assured that it wasn’t the whole world that surrendered.’Original link
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