We clambered over one stile, and crossed a field [...] We walked to the middle of the field, and there, midst a chump of rushes, was the well. It didn't look to me like it was too magical, as it was just water, surrounded by some built-up stones. Kneel down and drink it, he said [...] It was the loveliest water I ever tasted and the more I drank of it, the lovelier it became. And then we lay under a big shady tree and my father made up stories and recited poetry and manufactured tales of the doings of the shapes in the clouds. [...]
When my father left us and went to England, I went to find the well again. Over the same stile I went, over the same ditch, past the big sheltering tree, to where the well had been. It wasn't there, no rushes, no well.
I tramped all over that field, and the field to the south of it, and to the north of it, and every other field, but never again did I find that well, and never again did I find the father who brought me there.
Malachy McCourt, A Monk Swimming.