Night owls and early birds


Sir, – I have respected Donald Clarke’s writings as a film critic in the past , but with his “Good people often rise late” column (Opinion & Analysis, September 14th) he has become my hero.

Born at 12:30pm 81 years ago, I have spent a lifetime attempting to conform to day/night patterns while being a biological night owl. As a student, employee, wife, mother, even as a volunteer, one must be an early bird, and thus suffer the slings and arrows of those who cloak themselves “in moral superiority”.

But after my early-bird husband retired and we moved to Ireland in 1992, I learned the technique and have been wallowing in my frowned-upon habit for years; friends know and accept my idiosyncrasy and dare not phone me before afternoon, yet I am constantly asked to explain why.

Thus I will distribute Mr Clarke’s article to everyone who has asked, and with it I may even quote from the Wallace Stevens poem Night: “The house was quiet and the world was calm.” – Yours, etc,


Ard na Lir,


Kinsale, Co Cork.