New Irish Writing | 

The Wooden River by Lisa Murphy

September’s winning story

Illustration by Harriet Yakub

Lisa Murphy

The atmosphere between them had been tense since the flight. The baby was placid now, in the back seat of the car, where Poppy sat next to him, poised to entertain at the first sign of upset. Donnacha didn’t know why she couldn’t have sat in the front seat with him; the baby was fine, strapped in and dozing. Fields blurred by the windows, soggy-green hills and overgrown ditches. It was absurd, he thought — him looking like a taxi driver, shuttling a mother and her child around country roads.