Dirty Linen: The Troubles In My Home Place by Martin Doyle


The truth that should be spoken is that their Westminster team wanted to restore a harder land border to render reunification more difficult: no other explanation makes sense of their conduct.

Brendan O’Leary

The senseless shooting dead of journalist and author Lyra McKee by dissident republicans in Derry last night feels like the worst of our past reaching out its cold, dead hand to rob us of the best of our future.

but I got so excited… I just loved the feel of it and so every so often then, he would have took home only a wee tiny piece. And I used to keep them in a shoebox and when I was going to bed at night, Mummy says I had the fur all out … and they would have waited till I was sleeping and then took the fur and put it in the box under the bed. And that was the ritual every night.

 …I took the huff and I went up to bed and I pulled the quilt over me, and I says, think of something else, think of something else. I got a photograph of my dad and me lodged in my head but I couldn’t find it. All I could think about was I must leave that coat into the cleaners because I can’t wash it in the machine with the fur on it. And the fur! This come into my head and such a feeling I got. I could feel my daddy’s arms round me and I could see this box of fur and the comfort that I got from that box of fur and before this Mummy had been telling me, “Donna, talk to your daddy and he’ll answer you. Talk to your daddy and you’ll get peace.”

‘I phoned Mummy the next morning and I didn’t even get the words out. She says, “Your daddy spoke to you last night,” and I said, “It’s not that he spoke to me, Mummy, he was with me.” And she asked me about it and she says to me, “Do you remember the box of fur?” And I says, “No, Mummy, but the feeling I got from this box of fur,” I says, “I never, ever had such a feeling of peace …” so she told me about it.’