The Exorcism.

There was a man asleep in Medjugorje. Under the statue of Jesus. Hard to know was he drunk or in a religious trance. His eyes were kind of half open and every so often he’d give a stir, or a mutter, like he was fighting demons somewhere in his demented dreams. Believers mostly ignored him. They were more concerned with the water leakin from Jesus’ knee. It was one of those miracles that nobody could explain. Water coming from a statue. No obvious source, just weeping from the kneecap and being wiped up by pilgrims in the hope of wild cures and answered prayers. The sun was setting in the distance, growing dark on the spot where Mary appeared. The path up the mountain was lit by lanterns, guiding the way for the stations of the cross. The evening was set. The buses were parked and the restaurants were preparing the food for the dinner. Then your man on the ground started moaning. A painful lament at first, working it’s way into temper, and then eventually shouting “Jesus is my brother! Jesus is my brother!” He was at it for a while before people took notice. What was this? A lunatic? A drunk? Or a man possessed? Where better for an exorcism sure. Soon there were was a crowd of women around him, from all sorts of nationalities, hands around his head, praying like mad. They were pulling out Rosaries and Angelus and every sort of act of contrition ever heard but it was doing no good. He kept on shouting. “JESUS IS MY BROTHER! AHAAAAHAHAH!”
Kids were brought away. Men were kinda making shuffles, like they might have to bring him somewhere. The women kept praying. Louder now, more forceful. Strong words started to sink into the dialogue. They were talking about Casting out Demons and Lucifer’s Sins. Still he kept roaring. Like he was in touch with the prayers, being hurt by them. Out of nowhere then. A woman in dreadlocks, with an African Twang, jumped into the middle and took control. She did the thing with the eyes. African Mantra stuff. Really feeling it, caught the demon somewhere in her mind, snake like tongue between her teeth and she gave it all with: “Out, Satan, Leave this body, desist from your evil and be cast back into your dark CAVERN OF HELL!!”
There was a stunned silence. I thought Jesus was going to look up and take notice for a second but he stayed quiet and let his knee do the talking. Suddenly your man on the ground jumped up, wide eyes, looked at everyone like they were mad. Had the look of a fella that went for one pint somewhere in Mayo and somehow woke up in Medjugorje surrounded by self styled exorcists. A few people tried to talk to him, touch his shoulder, whisper holy things, but he was having none of it. He simply took off towards Mary’s mountain, full of purpose, guided by the lights along the trail, not looking back for a second. Soon enough it was too dark to see him anymore so people started talking about being hungry and then everyone went for the food.


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Fisherman’s Blues is the hilarious new novel from Mick Donnellan.Dark and audacious, written in a distinct West of Ireland vernacular, it covers a myriad of genres from Crime Noir to comedy and an odd bit of religion. Fresh in its language, vivid in its descriptions, the book sings with the signature style of all Donnellan’s previous work, and a bit more. Delving into the lives of drinkers, lovers, thieves and scam artists, the story weaves a web of intrigue and curiosity that ends with an unforgettable bang. Not without its poignant moments, the plot hinges on the chaotic consequences of three unlikely comrade’s attempts to save their lost relationships, while unintentionally ruining the plans of a rising criminal’s efforts to take over the city. The question is: Can they succeed? And if they don’t, what then? And where have the women really gone?

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