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Image by Sean Kuriyan


letter from the editors

Dearest friends,


​Áitiúil, meaning local, is our Gaeilgish sentiment of the feeling of home. Of safety, of comfort, of the familiar. It evokes the image of more than just your own commute, your own street, your own pub. The intimacy of the known, in a country like ours, stands as so much more than the recognisable. When folks flee further afield, as they are oft forced to do, they still find love, comfort, and home in any corner. But there is that barely conceivable, just about palpable knowledge we all have: that the local never move. In its second year of publication, this phrase has taken on more meaning than we could ever have expected. To us, this edition echoes how these feelings of home can change as we grow, and, more resonantly than ever, how it can grow with us. In the process of our selection, we wanted to fill volume two with work that was contemporary and yet familiar, flavours that are both fresh yet unmistakably Irish that teacht go maith le chéile. 

The Madrigal and The Martello have continued to intertwine as publications, and as friends. This anthology is a joinder of two roofs, and we could not be prouder of what now calls it home. It is a true honour to work alongside one another, and share in the creation of something that has come to mean so much to each of us as writers, editors, individuals, and dear, dear friends. Reading and reviewing the poetry, prose, and artwork for this edition has been a privilege, and we cannot show enough gratitude to all those who have trusted us with their work. Amid a season of ever-growing change, it is safe to say that the perusal of Áitiúil has delighted, devastated, and disburdened us in equal measure, and demonstrated perhaps the most crucial aspect of home: here in these pages, you are never alone. So go on, read, think, and enjoy it; there'll be a seat saved for you when you're done.

As ever: Be well and Be safe

Helen, Úna, Luke, and Jack

The Editors xxx

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