Annestown, Co. Waterford
Annestown, Co. Waterford

Walls, and especially fragments of old walls, always draw me in. High up on the cliffs over Annestown Beach this sliver of wall  blends perfectly into its surroundings. It’s like nature is trying to make it its own but the human hand and heart still linger there and will until the last stone is gone.

There are no clues now about the builder or maybe more than one person was involved. Did they have the time or inclination to bask in the scenery of the Copper Coast? How far back was the wall from the now crumbling cliff? How far did the wall stretch? Was it a boundary wall to prevent animals from falling into the deep sea below? I always think of John B. Keane’s, The Field, when I’m there.

Over the years, did people sit on this wall chatting in the summer sunshine. Maybe it was a place were lovers sat, arms entwined, planning their futures. Was it a place where men and women leaned, taking a last glimpse of a place they loved before emigrating to foreign lands?

Author: socialbridge

I am a sociologist and writer from Ireland. I have worked as a social researcher for 30 years and have had a lifelong passion for writing. My main research interests relate to health care and I love to write both non-fiction and poetry.

23 thoughts on “Fragments”

  1. The history in your country is amazing Jean. Here a wall can’t be more than 300 years or so old. In your neck of the woods that wall could have been there for thousands of years. There’s a program about pickers from Wales called “Salvage” on TV here. I was watching it the other day and they were talking to a farmer whose family had farmed the same land since 1200 AD – over 800 years.

    Awesome history in your land Jean.

  2. I loved reading this. My parents are from Ireland and I have a cousin in Waterford. I think this is the beauty of Ireland, it just draws you back and gives you time to think. Wonderful photo and description.

  3. There is a’s written on the wind and in the mind of the person who discovers it. I remember when we were remodeling our kitchen and found an old photo of someones’ wedding day about the time that our home was built 1939. I was also planting bulbs and digging by the back porch and I came across some artifacts that someone had buried..a medal from the NY worlds fair, a wooden nickle with advertising on it and some coins..I felt like I struck gold in finding the buried treasure. The land that this house is built on use to have a shoe factory and we’re forever finding leather artifacts and old nails amongst broken glass in the garden area..very exciting. Old foundations do have a story to tell if one has the time to do some looking for clues..

  4. I also love rocky walls. In New England, the rock walls used to show the boundaries between farms. Now, people pay a lot of money to have rock walls placed beautifully around their yard. When we bought a 2-acre home outside the Boston area (wooded small village), my guy went around the perimeter of the yard and dug up the old rocks settled into the earth after decades (once used as a rocky border in the 1800s). It took him years, but eventually we had the original rocky wall back up. And we sat on it and wondered about the past.

  5. Hi Jean,

    There is something magical about stone, especially stone walls. Even though we don’t have stone walls or buildings nearly as old as you do in Ireland, there are interesting and it is fun to imagine how they were built. We see some partial stone walls on some our hikes. We imagine them to be part of old farms, although it is hard to imagine farming on the rocky soil.


    1. Nancy, I agree totally about the magic of stone and stone walls. We are blessed to have so many different kinds of stone walls here in Ireland.
      Your hikes sound like they are full of interesting and inspiring things not to talk about the fresh air.

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