Michael Harding at Lough Allen, Co Leitrim. Photograph: Brian Farrell

A neighbour of mine had a marmalade cat that spent all last winter in the kitchen, but when the spring came he vanished, as tomcats do. The cat had(...)

‘I’m very sorry about that, Mr Frog,’ I said. ‘I didn’t see you in the grass.’ Photograph: Thinkstock

I was mowing the grass when I came across a frog. He was lucky, because he hopped away before the machine had a chance to slice him in bits. And he(...)

Sheep in the Mourne mountains

I went to visit Little Lotus last week. It was late in the evening, and she was at supper with her partner and child. As I came in the door they we(...)

Last year two friends gave me a banjo for my birthday. But it sat in its swanky black case for a year getting dusty. I tried plucking a few strings(...)

The Pajero was 10 years old last week so I went into a garage and asked a salesman what price was on the nice little Toyota Freelander with the 2009 r(...)

Last week two old magpies were sitting on an ash tree drenched with red berries. I don’t know if they eat berries or were just having a discussion (...)

‘It wasn’t Garth Brooks that they were afraid of.’ Photograph: Mario Anzuoni/Files/Reuters

I was in the back of a taxi in a seaside town. The sun was shining. The taxi man was telling me his life story. “I have four sons,” he said, “a(...)

‘My favourite film of the week was Voice of the Voiceless, a black-and-white masterpiece about a deaf girl dancing on the New York subway as she looked for money from commuters’

I bought a coffee in a cafe. That was the beginning of a story. It could have gone anywhere. Then I drank the coffee while talking to a waitress, w(...)

Michael Harding at Lough Allen, Co Leitrim. Photograph: Brian Farrell

I was in Clonmel last week at the Junction Festival and I attended a very avant-garde piece of street theatre presented by young people from the lo(...)

Body and Soul at Ballinlough Castle, Co Westmeath. Photograph: Allen Kiely

Donegal is unreal. That’s what young people say. Although they don’t mean that it’s not there. The mountains and rocks are definitely there. They were(...)