April 30

Awake in the midnight hour
We’re transported 
back to your bedside.
Shortly after the clock struck twelve
You left us
Staking your claim
on a brand new day.
Two years on
We remember you
Not as you were then
Grey and fading.
But at your brightest
technicolor best.
The joker  
Jiver
Our father
And friend
You were more
Than the sum of your parts 
And larger than any life.
We miss you 
Every day
But today a little more.
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2014: A Blank Page

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There’s something about the imminent arrival of a New Year that makes you question and reevaluate everything.

We resolve to be better, skinnier, healthier, happier. More often than not, we fail. New Year resolutions are often abandoned before January is out; we fail because we’re not fully committed to the idea, or simply because life gets in the way.

In preparation for the New Year, I bought a new pair of trainers and a swimsuit whilst out doing my Christmas shopping. Like many, I’m resolving to lose weight, get fit and reverse the damage done by festive overindulgence [I will do it – I’ve done it before and I will do it again]. But another recent purchase is perhaps more significant to my real New Year’s resolution.

I was standing in a newsagent’s in Shannon Airport a few days ago, having dropped my brother off for his flight back to London. I stood staring at the Best Sellers chart – a depression inducing mix of celebrity biographies, slimming cookbooks, romance novels & self-help books – hand picked to fuel not cure the January Blues. Perusing the titles, none of which I had any desire to read, I had a revelation about my resolution.

Instead of buying another book to add to the pile gathering dust on my Ikea bookcase, I picked up a three-pack of Moleskin notebooks. Three ruled notebooks with a combined 360 blank pages – just over one page for each day of the forthcoming year.

If I’ve learnt anything this year, it’s that you just don’t know what’s around the corner.

You can’t plan for everything. And you shouldn’t. Life’s unexpected plot twists are what make it worth living and heart wrenchingly difficult in equal measure. Our stories merge, intertwine and enrich each other’s lives. Some of the best of life’s events happen by chance.

One thing is certain: time passes and it passes too quickly. I love to write and I will make more time for it in 2014.

This New Year is my blank page – an opportunity to re-write the wrongs of my failed attempts at writing – another chance to start again and start afresh. One page at a time. Wish me luck.