The master says it’s a glorious thing to die for the Faith and Dad says it’s a glorious thing to die for Ireland and I wonder if there’s anyone in the world who would like us to live. My brothers are dead and my sister is dead and I wonder if they died for Ireland or the Faith. Dad says they were too young to die for anything. Mam says it was disease and starvation and him never having a job. Dad says, Och, Angela, puts on his cap and goes for a long walk.
The master says we’re each to bring threepence for the First Communion catechism with the green cover. The catechism has all the questions and answers we have to know by heart before we can receive First Communion. Older boys in the fifth class have the thick Confirmation catechism with the red cover and that costs sixpence. I’d love to be big and important and parade around with the red Confirmation catechism but I don’t think I’ll live that long the way I’m expected to die for this or that. I want to ask why there are so many big people who haven’t died for Ireland or the Faith but I know if you ask a question like that you get the thump on the head or you’re told go out and play.