Category Archives: Ireland

Celts!

My darling daughter turned 21, and I got the great pleasure of treating her to a week in London. Of the many highlights, here are a few.

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Taking photos of graffiti near Waterloo bridge. Getting a kick out of reading the names on the subway map & recognizing so many of them from pop culture
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Cramming in as many amazing exhibitions as our eyeballs and feet would allow.


Being Irish I thought I had a clue about the Celts, but this exhibition was an eye opener in more ways than one.

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Worn out!

Only through a bloody miracle and some marginally immoral behavior did we catch  our flight for a quick visit back to the West of Ireland. She was looking mysteriously celtic!

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Clew Bay, Co. Mayo

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Lough Carra Floods

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A small gem of sunshine

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Mother and daugher

DAY’S END

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Sudden rush of feathers
draughting the air above me
small flocks of careening birds
fly low over the meadow
chased by strong tail winds
a dozen at a time joining
the twisting, turning mass
flowing across the evening sky
out over the lake, back over the trees
a pulsing organism, feinting left and right
like black drops of ink swirled in water
and then, on signal, they descend
in chattering swarms into the reed beds
their shrill conversations fill the air—
a murmuration of starlings at day’s end.

Croagh Patrick

DSCF8535After four days of gales and pelting rain in the west of Ireland, the sun decided to show itself a few moments before sunset. The mountain in the distance is Croagh Patrick, or the Reek as it’s known locally. It’s been a place of pilgrimage from long before the followers of St. Patrick started trekking up its scree slopes in bare feet. Over the years I’ve taken many photos of it from all angles. Here are a few.
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PALACE OF THE BOYNE – Brú na Bóinne

Dawn watchers exhale
steamy breath as lick
of sunlight passes
through a small opening
creeps down
a stone passage on
winter’s equinox bathes
in solstice light
the tomb that echoes
with faith and ritual

Five thousand years
the stones have held
the secrets of unknown
builders to capture
the wild stallion of the sun
unfettered marker of
the season when
to draw forth the plow
when to sow and reap
and how to hope

Homage paid with
stone hammer flint
picking swirling impressions into
rock tributes placed
offerings of bead and bone
in crevices carved
granite basins to hold
charred remains of
those that had the gift to see
the future bring prosperity

To connect living to dead
life to death light to darkness
sacrifice frost on
early morning grass shivering
attendants brown cow bellowing
in acknowledgement of
steam rising off hot blood in
cold winter sun to heat
the earth and draw
the soul of a new year forward.

"Newgrange Eingang Stein" by I, Clemensfranz. Licensed under CC BY 2.5 via Wikimedia Commons - http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Newgrange_Eingang_Stein.jpg#/media/File:Newgrange_Eingang_Stein.jpg

“Newgrange Eingang Stein” by I, Clemensfranz. Licensed under CC BY 2.5 via Wikimedia Commons – http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Newgrange_Eingang_Stein.jpg#/media/File:Newgrange_Eingang_Stein.jpg

 

 

IMAGINE A TREE

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Multi-chambered
fortress, tree house, throne
toe holder, ship’s mast
staircase to the heavens
galleon of the woods above
tentacle crawling roots below
battle scarred silver hide
xylem and phloem
carrying fingerprints
of centuries, absorbing
earth and air, detritus
one fleeting moment of many
flickering image—
ghost at the back of an eyelid—
the chestnut mare
scratching her rump
against a beech sapling
green with fast flowing growth
on a June evening
in a cloud of golden gnats
and her tail swishing
from side to side
the memory ingrained
in a low-slung limb
a moss saddled horse.

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SUN RAYS

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. . . the little mice began to gather corn and nuts and wheat and straw. They all worked day and night. All—except Frederick.
“Frederick, why don’t you work? They asked.
“I do work,” said Frederick.
“I gather sun rays for the cold dark winter days.”

—Frederick by Leo Lionni

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