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Heinrich Böll: Irisch Journal

...again the finger halts: here there used to be a little cemetery for unbaptized children; a single grave is still to be seen, bordered with pieces of quartz....

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... And a certain something has now made its way to Ireland, that ominous something known as The Pill - and this something absolutely paralyzes me: the prospect that fewer children might be born in Ireland fills me with dismay. I know: it's all very well for me to talk, it's easy for me to want them in large quantities: I am neither their father nor their government, and I am not required to part from them when many, as they must, start out on the road to emigration. Nowhere in the world have I seen so many, such lovely, and such natural children, and to know that His Majestry The Pill will succeed where all the Majesties of Great Britain have failed - in reducing the number of Irish children - seems to me to be no cause for rejoicing. ...

... This may offer some consolation to our mother the Church, patient and stern as she is, when the discussion of His White Majesty The Pill finds its way inexorably, inexorably, into the last provincial Irish paper, while the nuns (especially the ones surrounded by from four to seven brothers and sisters) disappear from the newspaper. ...