Tuesday, 17 May 2016

Did you cram?

The Leaving Cert is NOT the most important thing in the whole wide world. 

You'd never think it though in Ireland when Leaving Cert fever comes upon us. We even have a thing called Leaving Certificate Weather.

Did you cram?  I associate the sound of lawnmowers and the smell of fresh cut grass with cramming. With being indoors listening to my father digging in the back garden while I was digging too - my own grave! - or so it seemed.

Seamus Heaney's poem 'Digging' is now on for the Leaving Cert.  I'm not sure that that's the kindest thing to do to a poem....

I love it for the way it evokes fond memories my father and only faint shuddering memories of that futile cramming summer.

Everyone who knows a beleaguered, stressed Leaving Certer should encourage them to breathe and take breaks.

If you're in Dublin bring them to Farmleigh Gallery for a breather.

There you will find an excellent exhibition running from 8-29 May entitled 'Portraits of a Nation' which features 82 portraints by 54 artists.

This bronze of Seamus Heaney by Carolyn Mulholland is my favourite.

'Under my window, a clean rasping sound
When the spade sinks into gravelly ground:
My father, digging. I look down

Till his straining rump among the flowerbeds
Bends low, comes up twenty years away
Stooping in rhythm through potato drills
Where he was digging.'

Or, before they get really stuck in to the serious digging, maybe take them to Bloom in the park 2-6 June.

And, if all else fails, we could pray.  Did you pray?


  1. I did not cram. ..I never knew what I should 'cram'...x

  2. I did not cram. ..I never knew what I should 'cram'...x

  3. Champion Crammer here! Saw me through every exam :)

    And thank u for the heads up in the exhibition. I adore portraits and I didn't know it was on! I shall combine that with a visit to the graduate Illustration show which is on in the Cow Shed gallery in Farmleigh right now.