Longford New Writing Column: Peace

Maeve Carberry was a winner of the Ballymahon Vocational School short story competition

Maeve Carbery


Maeve Carbery



Writing a Eulogy

The Longford Leader New Writing column provides the creative writers of Longford with an opportunity to share their work with a larger audience. If you have a piece of writing - poetry, prose, etc - you'd like to see published in the Longford Leader, email newsroom@longfordleader.ie with a submission of no more than 1,000 words.

“Cara Phillips, get down here now and say sorry to your brother!”

That is what my mother would normally say to me if I was mean to my brother.

I really wish that is what the guards said to me when I was mean to my friend. Perhaps 'mean' is an understatement.

Monday 21st September

Dear Diary – Ugh, Mondays. My least favourite day. Surely everyone agrees.

This morning started as any other, threw on my awful uniform, inhaled stale Coco Pops and brushed my teeth.

As I was attacking by back molars, I spat and suddenly remembered that today I had a History test. “Damn It!” and spat again.

I hadn’t studied. I forgot. Who needs to know about the causes of World War One? It happened. Get over it! But I know there will be a 3rd World War and I’ll be the only victim! Mrs Egan will kill me.

On the bus, I tried thinking of excuses. “I was sick” – I had used that before. “I was away?” – Egan won’t believe that.

The bus passed Lucy’s house. That was the excuse I was going to use. “Lucy accidentally took my History books home”.

The perfect excuse. She’d have to believe that. The hard part was getting Lucy to go along with this.

For a Monday morning, it was lovely. A refreshing breeze blew against my face, the sky was blue and the sun shone.

Typical, August was an awful month. The minute school starts – beach weather! But today was perfect. What could go wrong!

In class, I couldn’t see Lucy. I started to panic. Egan would burst in any minute. Hair up in a bun. She means business when the hair is in a bun.

Thank God, Lucy came in and sat across from me. Egan breezed in “Books away, pens out! I hope you all studied hard over the weekend!” I looked across at Lucy and winked. She returned a down-mouthed confused look.

“Mrs. Egan, I wasn’t able to study because Lucy took my books home by mistake.” So far so good.

“Lucy, is this true?” Egan’s voice had gone up a few octaves. “No miss,” came the reply. My heart skipped a beat. “I wasn’t in last Friday, so how could I have brought Cara’s books home?”

I wanted the ground to open up! Alannah Dowd suppressed a snigger and everyone else gasped. Egan just bellowed three words “Detention. One week.”

I should have known that Lucy was too stupid to comprehend a nod and a wink. Why the hell couldn’t she just go along with it? It’s all her stupid fault!

Monday 28th September

Dear Diary – It has been a week. I still refuse to speak to Lucy. I’m furious with her. I passed her today on the corridor. I nudged her, she fell into the lockers. Serves her right!


Hello Diary. Cara hasn’t spoken to me in a week. Some best friend she is. Why is she being so horrible to me? I didn’t do anything wrong.

She texted me today. Called me “useless”. I feel awful. Why say such a thing?

She walked by me today and I know full well she deliberately knocked me into the lockers. I really hurt my shoulder. I don’t know how much more of this I can take!

CARA’S DIARY: Wednesday 10th October

It has been a month now. I‘m still not speaking to Lucy. Why should I? She texts me every day. She even sent me a picture of her with her mouth down like a little puppy dog. That went straight to Facebook! I even captioned it “Whinging Mutt!” – Got such a laugh.

LUCY’S DIARY – Thursday, October 12th

I’m so upset. Cara has taken it too far. The pushing and ignoring is one thing but she really hurt my feelings putting up that picture.

Alannah Dowd even commented that my bark was worse than my bite.

Some of the Second Years who I hardly even know made barking sounds on the corridor outside Science today.

I’m not going back to that school. I have to tell Mam and dad.

CARA’S DIARY - Monday, October 15th

What a day! My mam is furious. Lucy’s dad rang this evening. He was livid. He told mam that Lucy has been crying in her room for the past few days. She couldn’t go in to school on Friday because she was sobbing in her room.
Mam really read the riot act to me. My tablet was taken and I’m grounded indefinitely!

October 16th 2 am

Dear Diary - I can’t sleep. I have been crying all evening. I have been so horrible to my best friend. I regret everything. It was all my fault in the first place. Stupid History test! Stupid me. I am going to go over to Lucy’s tomorrow.

LUCY’S DIARY - Tuesday, October 16th

What a day. Cara arrived this evening, she had her mam with her. I ignored her when she came in. I was so angry. How could she do all those awful things to me? Her best friend.

However, she started crying and gave me a hug. I really think that she is genuinely sorry. I told her to take down that photo of me on Facebook and apologise for putting it there on the first place. She said she would and write the apology on Facebook.

We hugged again. Life is short. Peace was made. She is a good friend but I made her promise not to do anything like that again.

CARA’S DIARY – Tuesday, October 16th

Dear Diary – Today was a good day. I went around to Lucy’s and grovelled for forgiveness. I really learned a lesson today. I will never hurt anyone’s feeling like that again.

I’m 14 years old, but I know that I will never do anything like that again. Friends are important and Lucy is the best friend anyone could ever have.

I’m tired now, but now I feel I can get a good night sleep…in peace.