Fishing (twice told Irish folk tale)

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The family no longer fishes. This has to do with history and the blackness that came to the potatoes. The family was starving; there was no food. There was rot in the fields. The English bastards would not help, the local council was no good and the family wasn’t about to become soupers—Protestants. There were seven of them: Bridget, Francis and the five children in the sod of County Cavan, 1847. Francis said he would fish on the Arney River—God will provide. He hooked worms onto hairpins and lowered them into the river on string. On his first day out he caught seven fish. Blessed Mother Mary, Jaysus…For days he walked to the Arney, threw in the hairpin and worms and caught seven fish. Every day seven fish. Lucky sevens! Michael, the smallest one, died anyway. Then Francis caught six fish every day. Six, Blessed Mother Mary, Jaysus. The number of fish he was catching went down to six.