Sunday 26 March 2017

'My wife has bolted . . . and she has taken the children'

John McEntee recalls his interviews with JP Donleavy as the drama of the two children by two brothers began to unfold

The shortest short story ever written consisted of three bald sentences. "For Sale. Baby Shoes. Never Worn." Perhaps JP Donleavy, contemplating the late blossoming scandal of his failed second marriage might scribble an even more abrupt alternative: "Four Children. Two not mine."

There is no doubt that the genius who wrote The Ginger Man could effortlessly conjure up a fictional scenario reflecting his own extraordinary journey of love, climaxing in this week's confirmation that his two youngest offspring were fathered by two separate members of the famous Guinness-brewing dynasty.

This weekend JP --Mike to his friends -- remains in glorious seclusion in Levington Park, Co Westmeath.

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