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“The Cuppa Sugar Days” Warmhearted Tales Of A Newspaperman.

The eagerly awaited fourth publication by Rahealty, Thurles, Co. Tipperary, based freelance writer, author and poet Mr Tom Ryan, is about to hit the book shelves in the coming days.

This ideal Christmas gift, “The Cuppa Sugar Days”, includes light-hearted tales from another era, against the backdrop of County Tipperary, together with a collection of seven short stories and poetry.

Photo courtesy Bríd Ryan.

In “A message from Misty’s Dog Heaven” we discover that there might, indeed, be a heavenly place for our dear departed friends from the animal world.

In “The Lovers of Rathnakray”, love finds it difficult to find a way for one crazy mixed-up playwright.

The beautiful tale, “A Christmas Card From New York”, reveals how a simple Christmas card changed one man’s attitude to life, living and love.

In “Christmas Romances” an old man looks back at Christmas Eve on his cherished loves of a lifetime.

In “The Gambles of Goosegogs O’Hara”, Goosegogs and his pal Shifty Condon, get a raging ultimatum from fiery Georgia Mae, latter spouse of the horse racing enthusiast, Goosegogs.

In “Alexander’s Dream Girl”, a husband longs for a positive outcome to his wife’s battle for good health.

In “The Visit”, an unusual short story in verse, loneliness and old age is put under the microscope.

This most charming of publications also features numerous tales about interesting people, each from every walk of life in County Tipperary.

They include a Goldmining Prospector in Alaska; an International Sheep Dog Trialist of BBC renown in historic Drom; an International Designer’s achievement in China; a World Champion Powerlifter; a man who is at home in Graveyards; a Global Busker and friend of the famous; the late, Jimmy Doyle and John Doyle and hurlers of another era; Liam Sheedy’s inspiring words at Colaiste Mhuire Awards Night; the magic of the Munster Final in Thurles long ago and All-Ireland hurling traditions; Postmen; Railwaymen; Newspaper Personalities; Theatre Folk and Show Business people (both amateur and professional); Tales Out of School in Thurles and elsewhere; Tipperary Traditions; Profiles of Interesting Personalities from a Militaria collector to a Records Enthusiast; an Organic Farmer; an England-based Thurles Blues Musician; Messenger Boys; a Fiddler’s Retreat in Thurles; Scouts; Publicans; Teachers; Nuns; Ballad Singers; Rugby Personalities; Hockey Players; Athletes; Equestrian Folk; Cricket Enthusiasts; a former Inter Milan Soccer Player; an Inspiring Farmworker and Talented Wife; a Thurles family’s Military Tradition; Vintage Vehicle; Poets; Playwrights; Victoria Cross heroes; Carol Singers; reminiscences of Life in London and Dublin in the “Swinging Sixties”; the tragic Kennedy family of the United States and the Thurles Association.

There is a special tribute to eminent Tipperary poet and friend of the author, the late great Dennis O’Driscoll from Thurles.

All these and much more, feature in this wonderful publication by Tom Ryan, who has been writing about County Tipperary life and times for over 50 years in both regional, national and other media publications.

The 560 page publication includes photos by Bríd Ryan and is dedicated to Tom’s late wife, Christina (Ina).
Details of the official launch by Dr Labhras O’Murchu (Director General of CCE) will be confirmed within the coming weeks.

In the meanwhile, for further information, do contact author Mr Tom Ryan, Mobile Tel. No. 0872131003.

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Early On A Silver Frosted Morning.

Early On A Silver Frosted Morning.

Courtesy of Thurles Author & Poet Tom Ryan ©

Early on a silver frosted morning,
After a steaming cup of tea,
In the uncle Pakie’s house out the road.
Shivering in my short trousers
At the prospect of digging the potatoes,
In the pit at the headland,
Below the fence,
With the cruel wire traps for the rabbits,
And beside the hen house,
With the eggs shining and white and brown
In all the secret haybarn places.
My nails would be sore with the frost
And the picking.
Then just when the winter had won,
Pakie would point to the cabbage patch,
Planted row by frosted row
In the garden,
And urge me; he whispering, to seek
The silver golden treasures
Of the Fairy of the Frost.
At seven I loved a secret
And so, on wondrous adventure bound,
I sought this treasure,
And in this fairy foggy morning,
After a search
Under a great big head of cabbage,
There was the brown paper bag of wonder,
With the chocolate bars
And the soft and hard papered sweets
In, oh, a myriad of magical colours.
END

Tom Ryan, “Iona”, Rahealty, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

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A Winters Tale

A Winters Tale

Courtesy of Thurles Author & Poet Tom Ryan ©

I saw a tree; its branches like five gnarled fingers,
Bare, barren, against a sky of austere lead,
And I shivered.
Cold, gaunt the time,
The mist’s on the mountains.
Night shadows fall fast on the day.
The wind moans in the haggard, crying for summer.
And each human’s greeting
More a wheeze, a cough, a sneeze.
The woodshed’s full.
A cat, back to fire,
Glares at secret places round the house,
That warm retreat from winter and from woe.
We clap our hands for warmth.
For comfort grimly eye the sky.
And all in vain,
We sip the tea,
With hearts in one great hurry for the Spring.

END

Tom Ryan, “Iona”, Rahealty, Thurles, Co Tipperary.

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“Birthday Girl” By Tom Ryan.

Birthday Girl

Courtesy of Thurles Author & Poet Tom Ryan ©

I’ll measure not your worth in days,
Nor by a calendar your beauty note.
But only the memories ever and always
Of a loveliness you wrote
On stars and earth.
Your years of life
Gracing the world.
Beautiful the tale you told
Of silver childhood, youth of gold,
And, lit by the light of the future,
Are still yet bound
For brave and beautiful horizons all around.

END

Tom Ryan “Iona”, Rahealty, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

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A Woman’s Mystery

A Woman’s Mystery

Courtesy of Thurles Author & Poet Tom Ryan ©

The world is from the beginning
In a woman’s arms;
She is the beginning of each beginning
In an ebb and flow, unending mystery.
Say that you love her, even hate her,
But never say her mystery is yours.
You may touch upon it, at best,
Be captivated by its spell,
Rail against that mystery,
Betray all for it,
Heart and home, faith and fatherland,
All that you hold dear,
Fades before a woman’s wonder.
Kingdoms fall and nations go to war,
A thousand ships have sailed for her face,
The strong have been reduced by her,
The weak with her are strong as strong could be.
Cowards rise to heroism,
Brave men falter,
The noble are ignoble,
And wretched beings are giants,
Because of a woman’s mystery.
No book or wise old being
Can comprehend it,
Nor strong brave youth master it,
And when you think you’ve conquered it,
‘Tis you that has been conquered.
A mystery beyond time and space
Has an eternal quality,
Source of all we are, will ever be,
So love her, like her, hate her
But be not fooled.
Think what you may of a simple country lass or queen
You, dear man, shall never know
Nor fathom
Her unfathomable mystery,
Nor, perhaps, will she!

END

Tom Ryan “Iona”, Rahealty, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

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