Sunday

BEWLEY’S OF GRAFTON STREET -MAYDAY, MAYDAY, MAYDAY




Roasting coffee aromas fanned out onto the street,
Half intimidated by the waitress 'Tattens' we always seemed to get.- I recognised her voice immediately on Bowman; Sunday - when as children we were brought for a treat to Bewley’s; (I always asked for Shepherds Pie, followed by Rice Pudding, both were served in foil tins.)
Thawing out from freezing student living over almond buns and white coffee on Sundays,the four sections of the single paper shared out between us
High spirits at 6 a.m. after the Trinity Ball, everyone in high spirits, the whole cafe wearing black tie and ball gowns, the cafe open specially for the occasion.
Fascination with the boiled sweet rotating vats during a personal tour of the sweet factory upstairs, – I was researching at the time and had dreams for years after about getting lost in such meandering corridors.


Delight as my overseas visitors to the Bacon Studio and Harry Clarke windows in the Municipal Gallery sipped their tea and slowly realized they were seated under more art.

‘The Table’  - towards the back of the restaurant where breakups invariably happened - Not too public, but safely surrounded by people should things get out of hand.

Lunchtime Plays, served with a bowl of soup and brown bread,
Narrow balcony seats high over Grafton Street, the scene below felt like theatre
Inside wine high backed snugs, bentwood chairs, real coal fires
Authentic, original, cherished
Like a Phoenix Bewleys rose up from the ashes before.
Can this really ‘be the end’ for Bewley’s of Grafton Street?

©Sheena Meagher 

Friday

DANCING ON THE LIGHT OF THE LAST SUPER MOON OF 2020



This cut out figure has been in my window since it was gifted  to me by a friend returning to the States.  I love the childlike, carefree energy it evokes- and somehow it is always  positioned to dance in the moonlight!

Thursday

MAY FULL MOON, 7TH 2020


Light sparkling on water;  a painting of the full moon on Annaghmakerrig Lake, and a photo of light defracted into all the colours of the rainbow on Silver Strand like petals.

Full moon in May is the planting moon, the flower moon. 

Wednesday

Normal People, Trinity College Dublin in this very different month of May


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Watching Normal People, adapted from the novel by Irish author Sally Rooney
and the scenes in Trinity College this evening I wonder what college is like under the almost full moon tonight?  Have the corridors,  lecture theatres, libraries, squares, the campus playing fields ever been so empty of people for such a long period?   Or are the ghosts of Trinity folk past roaming the grounds with the Trinity Fox  and occupying seats vacated by the living?  The paintings are from the series I painted of college and produced as giclee prints featuring this oasis within Dublin city.  




Tuesday

THE GLORIOUS 5TH OF MAY (to quote Terry Pratchett)


As I prepare to launch into the day – and it is a gloriously beautiful one – I remember Paul Brady’s words ‘My optimism doesn’t mean I’m not aware or I don’t care’.

I wonder how I ever ‘fitted’ or probably squeezed SO much into every hour of every day of every week.  And all those classes - which I loved, and miss, the exercise, the people, the learning.  
I love to get away to the Tyrone Guthrie Centre, giving myself the Gift of Time to create, to paint, and to chat with other folk who were gathered around the coffee table or at the nightly dinner at 7pm when the gong was sounded to call everyone from their work.  It’s taken til now, - I had hints at the start this might happen.

Today I am setting up my studio in the front hall on this the glorious 5th of May, 2020.

Sunday

LOVE HEARTS IN MAY

Here are two of my household, the ‘co- cocooners’, Charlie and PepR.  They are the best of friends, take all sorts of knocks from each other and never hold a grudge of get jealous of each other.

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I had always wanted a sighthound but when PepR chose a straggly, half wild brown fuzz covered year old  Lurcher with whom I had no connection I went along with it and it was the best decision ever.  The Lurcher matured into a wonderful dog, who had great empathy with my dad during his last years, loves my mum and adores my nephew.  The pair of dogs are like non identical twins, they fit so well together.  I am so thankful I stayed with that decision, and didn’t break Pepr’s heart when the ‘perfect Lurcher puppy’, complete with a white tip at the end of his tail was presented by the KWWSPCA weeks later.   That pup found a perfect home with a couple who love running and hillwalking. 


I’m also grateful for this beautiful colourful time when I can be outdoors in the garden, birdsong, sunshine and loving how people in sometimes sad and all in changed circumstances are focusing on what they can offer and who are so grateful for what they do have.

Saturday

ALL IN THE BEAUTIFUL MONTH OF MAY

One of my first ever animal portraits of my own first dog; a golden cocker spaniel with her constant companion Random.  Random was named after the Random Inn pub in Naas where she lived.  When she discovered our house and garden she used to come for a social visit and a few hours sleep in one of the dogs beds.  Her owner was retiring from the Inn and asked my mother if the dog -known to her as Towser, could stay with us .  Of course we were delighted.  Random lived with us from then on, but returned to the pub for her dinner every day - the food was more to her taste.  She took Sheeba, the cocker spaniel under her wing and the pair slept entwined , like the eternity symbol except in black and gold rather than black and white.  
Sheeba was a wild spirit, a tree climber, loved chasing gulls across the rocks at Lahinch and her show name was Lucia of the Maybush, being born on May 1st.  The year I brought her to the Cocker Show in Dublin she won hands down, the judges delighting in her happy friendly nature. 


Thursday

TOMORROW IS FRIDAY 1st May

Dancing all night at the best party in Dublin, 
dizzy with study, exams looming next Monday,
 the revellers flock around the Campanile as dawn breaks. 
This is the Trinity Ball- there is nothing like it. 

From Halcyon Hours Exhibition, TrinityCollege Dublin 

The first weekend of May was always significant for me; start of the Summer, long days, freedom.  As a student (not in Trinity) one of the highlights of the year was the Trinity Ball, traditionally held on campus the first weekend of May.  I was lucky to go several times;   One of the best was the year about 20 of us met in the pub, everyone dressed in black tie and ball gowns and all waiting to see if one guy had managed to get tickets for us all. He did.  We had a ball!  The whole campus was open to students, and fantastic bands played throughout the night, finishing at dawn with breakfast in Bewleys' of Grafton Street who opened specially for the occasion.
I still love to celebrate the start of May  - and hope the weather stays fine tomorrow!  The campanile may be replaced by towering bluebells in the garden, orchestra, bands and groups by the dawn chorus, the group of pals reduced to me and the dogs due to due to Covid 19 –I will be celebrating the start of Summer 2020 regardless!