English 10: Writing Portfolio


Catholic Memorial High School



Creative Writing  

Dr. Mr Nicholas Shakespear,

My name is James Harte and I currently attend Catholic Memorial high school in Boston Massachusetts. In school I am currently studying British authors. Your name came up when I was looking at a website for an assignment. The first thing the drew me to you was your last name Shakespear. I was curious if you related to the great William Shakespear. After reading the description of you I was not informed if you were a defendant of William, but when I read the description your writing I became quite interested in your work.

In your book “The Vison of Elena Sives” you write about South America. My school is constantly taking trips to South America to help the poor. This connection is what made me read one of your books. In “The Dancer Upstairs” the line:

“Marina, sitting in her cherry-red BMW and tilting her face to see the mirror, had been applying her lipstick. She had returned from Miami with a slightly different profile, a little less nose and a little more chin.”

I love how you incorporate humor with your great description. Personally I believe that this is the best style to write, because it captures the reality of a scene and makes it pop out of the pages to make you feel like your really there. I too try to write in this style of writing, unfortunately not as good as you tho.

It would be an honor if you come share your knowledge of writing and tell us about your child hood. We would greatly appreciate it because if you don’t we might loose out on learning you’re the style of writing, we would miss out on a few great stories, and we could finally find out if your related to William Shakespear

Thank you,

James Harte




























The song Biddy Mulligan was written in 1885 by an anonymous composer. The writer was most likely a widowed woman who lived in the Dublin. This is assumed from the lyrics “In Dublin they call it Coombe; But where would you see a fine widow like me?”. The song is about a widow trying to make an honest living . It shows how she has to sell things like bananas, apples and second hand clothing to get by. This song shows us the greater things in life. She is always in mourning, but every Sunday she is proud of her son when she sees him in the band.

In the 1800s Ireland was struck with a potato famine. Many families starved, were out of money and couldn’t find a job. To make ends meet people had to make a living their own way. As shown in the song. The woman had to sell things on the street corner just to survive. Many people of the time period had to do just that. The lucky people of the time had a little hope and joy left in them. Some had the hope of some day making it to America and making a better life for them and their children. Some had the hope of just seeing their children grow up and the hope that they would have raised them to life a better life they them selves.

At some point in time we are going to lose a loved one. The way that we handle it will all be different. In the song Biddy Mulligan the woman lost her husband. Every Sunday“At Patrick Street corner, for sixty-four years, I've stood, and no one can deny that while I stood there, nobody could dare To say black was the white of my eye”. Many people will not react this way but it shows what could happen if you lose some one that you truly love with all your heart. The line “To say black was the white of my eye” shows her love for her husband. According to a quote website your eyes are the gateway to your soul. The woman who lost someone eyes are black there for her grief and pain is unbearable from loss.

Today the song is covered by a man named Aiden Brennan. The song is most likely covered by a man instead of a woman because it is a known drinking song in Ireland. The name Biddy Mulligan can also be found in New Hampshire and Massachusetts in the United States, as pub names. When a young man named Mark Elliott from Holbrook and a student at Catholic Memorial High School was asked if he was knowledgeable of the song he answered “What! That’s a mad stupid name. Why are you bothering me asking me a stupid question like that. Who really cares about buddy mulligan or what ever its name is!”. Also when several other students were question they all responded the same “no”.

This song has taught me to love what I have and to know that one day it will be gone. As painful as the loss of a loved one will be the song teaches that life continues our love for those still living grows to fill the emptiness left by the this loss. Although we go on and our appearance may look to be over the loss a look into our soul will see that we forever mourn.




















Jack Abramoff is a very successful lobbyist and father of five who, in the summer of 2004, was charged with fraud, tax evasion, and conspiracy to bribe public officials. On January 3, 2006 in Washington Abramoff pleaded guilty to stealing $82 million dollars from 11 Indian tribes, bribing 20 members of Congressman and lawmakers with luxury trips, jobs for family members among other accommodations. Later that same week he pleaded guilty in the SunCruz fraud were he made a fake $23 million wire transfer. On March 29 2006 Abramoff received the minimum sentence of 5 years and 10 months behind bars, also he will have three years’ probation when he is released from prison. His motive for committing these crimes and ultimately throwing his life away was the need for power. He stole the money from the Indian tribes and SunCruz, a gambling boat company, so he could bribe the lawmakers to be able to manipulate and gain power in the United States court system.

According to Jack’s attorney he is an extremely holy Orthodox Jew who is truly sorry for what he did. Jack said this after he was sentenced “Your Honor, words will not be able to ever express how sorry I am for this, and I have profound regret and sorrow for the multitude of mistakes and harm I have caused. All of my remaining days, I will feel tremendous sadness and regret for my conduct and for what I have done. I only hope that I can merit forgiveness from the Almighty and from those I have wronged or caused to suffer”. Abramoff is said to be naming names according to Alice Fisher, head if the Justice Department’s criminal division. They are going to “follow this wherever it goes” promising to get who ever has been involved with Abramoff and his crimes. Abramoff also said that he was working on becoming “a new man.”

Other people who gained through the crimes that Abramoff committed are also being prosecuted and questioned. Adam Kidan was Abramoff’s main accomplice in all his actions that had to do with the SunCruz fraud. Kidan also receive five years and ten months for his crimes. Michael Scanlon benefitted when Jack told 11 Indian tribes to hire one of Scanlon’s public relations firm and charged the Indian tribes way to much for the services of Scanlon. The twenty lawmakers and congress men benefitted when they were treated with bribes from Abramoff such as dinners and vacations. Jack Abramoff also gained power when a coincidental murder of Konstantinos “Gus” Boublis. Boublis was the former owner of SunCruz and was in a power struggle with Abramoff and Kidan. In 2001 Boulis was killed in his car by three men that are now facing charges. One of the men charged with the murder worked for Adam Kidan. Jack and Adam have denied the charges but with the death of Boulis they became the two owners of SunCruz.

There are numerous accounts of corruption and bribing for power in British literature. In the Cambridge History of English Literature, 1660-1780, there is reference to text that is related to what Abramoff committed “Ministers preserve themselves in power by bribing the majority of the Senate or Great Council.”