William Beckett, father of the writer, was in the habit of taking a summer house for his family in the Wicklow village of Kilcoole, a short distance south from Redford Cemetery where he and his wife May would later be buried. 600 rifles were landed at Kilcoole by the Irish Volunteers in 1914, but it has not otherwise burnished the annals of Irish history. In 1963 Samuel Beckett drafted 43 pages of a play titled ‘Kilcool’ (sic), now preserved in Trinity College, Dublin, in which a young girl is brought on the ‘slow and easy’ train-line through Bray Head to a village by the sea, where she stays with a childless aunt. Though the fragment came to nothing, it is an important precursor text for another play of female isolation, Not I. I have met a woman who remembers Mrs Beckett and used to run errands for her, and giving a centenary talk on Beckett in nearby Greystones I was introduced to a cousin of the writer’s, Horner Beckett. I mention all of this by way of local colour, as someone with family roots in Kilcoole myself, since despite any superficial similarities with Beckett’s text the story told in my ‘Tunnels Through the Head’ is in fact drawn entirely from life. Make sense who may, as the man himself used to say.