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In this scene:



CORA               Leaving you was the hardest thing I ever did. I swear I cried three full days.

PAT                  Poor you. Must have been awful. How much did I cry?

CORA               You? I don’t know.

PAT                  No, course you don’t. So fucking selfish.

CORA               I don’t know because I didn’t dare ask. I would not have been able to deal with the truth.

PAT                  I don’t know either. Because even if I did, I would only know what someone else told me, someone who is not my mother. Its all lies. And I don’t know who to trust right now.

CORA               You will grow to trust me. You can trust me.

PAT                  Its too late for trust. Its too late for everything. Too late to go get a train home, too late for everything. (frustration, sigh, sound)

CORA               Do people still go out fishing on Loch Sheelin?

PAT                  What?

CORA               Do people still-

PAT                  I heard, just, what’s that got to do with anything?

CORA               You know, your grandfather used to take me out there. He wouldn’t say much but that didn’t seem to matter… and he’d catch a trout, or a pike. He’d leave it in the boad, wiggling around, no idea what was happening and why there was no air. I hated that part. Just watching them. I would cry on the inside. Inside only, wouldn’t show him tears. But he knew I hated it. So he showed me how to put them out of their misery, putting one finger into the mouth and pulling the head back till it crunched and then slap them back into a bucket. I could never do that. And I never ate the fish. Except on good Friday. And we would listen to the priest tell us that Jesus gathered all the fishermen to follow him. Did jesus do that with fish? Break their necks? And when your uncle Jim lay  there, gasping for air, I thought of the pike in the boat. And I couldn’t do anything to save him, just walk away. And when I knew he was gone, I called 911. And that was that.

PAT is upset and unsure of what to do.

CORA               Come to me. Put your head here (indicating her chest) Come to your mother.

PAT goes to CORA and puts his head on her chest.

CORA               There there there… my little Oisheen.

PAT                  Is that my real name?

CORA               It’s the name I called you. I’m the only one who can call you that.

PAT                  I must have cried all the time for you. I’ve always had a sadness in me. It must be that I didn’t have you.

CORA               I never got to breastfeed you.

PAT                  Never?

CORA               Biggest sadness in my life, apart from having to leave you behind.

PAT                  Where was I born?

CORA               At a house belonging to a friend of the family. I gave birth to you there.

PAT                  But where?

CORA               There was a family we knew on the west coast. Tierney’s. They had a shop. I stayed there for the last weeks before you were born, and the day you came out you were taken away. I had to stay until the swelling went down and I stopped leaking.

PAT                  Leaking? Milk?

CORA               Your milk. It was your milk. And you never got to have it.

PAT                  And now its too late.

CORA               Now its too late. No more.

PAT                  It was Uncle Jim’s fault. He could have taken me in. He took you away from me.

CORA               It was not that simple.

PAT                  He could have.

CORA               We all could have done lots of things. There there, put your head in to your mother. There…

PAT                  I would have done the same thing. Just watched him die.

CORA               The thing is, its not something you do once. There isn’t a day goes by that I don’t watch him, there, fighting the good fight, knowing he will lose. And what kept me going through all that was knowing I would be able to see you again. I had given up hope. All hope that I would ever sit and hold you into me, just sit here and do this. You are going to do what you want to do. Either you will stay or you will leave. But I’ve had this evening with you in my arms, lying into me, and all of it was worth it.

PAT                  I love you.

CORA               I know you do, I know you do…



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