Fate of the Lir-Brood II…

*

Our bed now rock of dripping-caves

Our lullaby a thunderous roar of waves

Royal-couches once our sleepy heads did press

And every night the harpist’s art, caress.

*

…”Submit to the king, choose a wife from his fosterage and gain his friendship for ever.”

So went the message sent to Lir at Sidhe Finnaha.

Lir immediately set out with fifty chariots and reached Red-Lake by sunset.

The next day the three daughters of Aillil were brought and sat on the same couch as their king and queen.

“They are all three beautiful,” said Lir, “I choose the eldest and noblest.”

Eve and Lir were wedded that self same day.

*

In course of time Eve bore Lir twins.

A daughter, Finnola and a son, Aedh.

But when she was brought to birth a second time and produced twin sons called, Fiachra and Conn, she did not survive.

An anguish of pain for Lir and to his death from grief he would have succumbed were it not for love of his four children.

The household of Red-Lake raised three shouts of lamentation when they heard.

When the mourning was over Red-Bove spoke, “we grieve for our foster daughter, Eve,  and for the good man to whom we gave her. Our acquaintance shall not be ended by this for I shall give Lir her sister to wife, my second foster child, Eva.” …

*

*

to be continued…

 

 

On the horizon…

The Silent Eye

I always look forward to September. It is one of the most  beautiful times of year in Britain. The days are usually mild and often beautiful, the last of the heather lingers as summer slides into autumn…a perfect moment for a wander in the landscape…and what better way to spend my birthday than with friends in the ancient and sacred places that I love?

The very first September event that we ran was the Harvest of Beingin Ilkley, up on the moors that I have loved since childhood. There is nowhere else on earth that I would rather have been at that moment. It was a small informal affair, just as we like to keep these events; no crowds, just a few friends exploring the landscape and sharing our different perspectives on the spiritual journey that is mirrored by that taken by our feet. The following September we…

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Fate of the Lir-Brood…

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Finnola, once my pride and joy

Dark Aedh, of adventures bold

Bright Fiachra, gentle, playful boy

Little Conn, with curls of gold.

*

The Crafty-Ones met to choose their Chieftain.

Five there were in the running…

Red-Bove, Angus-Ever-Young, Ilbrec of Assaroe, Lir of Finnaha and Midyir Bright-Mane.

Red-Bove won it at Lir’s displeasure.

Lir left the meet in anger without acknowledgment.

The Crafty-Folk swore retribution on him for this insult but Red-Bove would have none of it saying, “I am yet your king whether or not Lir chooses to recognise it.”

*

So things stood for a long while until Lir’s wife died after a  three day travail.

Heart-rent was Lir, with the loss, and the ill-news spread across Erin like wild-fire with many-a-soul suspecting witchery.

Red-Bove called the Crafty-Folk to meet.

“In the wake of this passing my friendship to Lir would be of service for I foster in my house-hold Aillel-of-Aran’s three daughters. Eve, Eva and Alva are the cleverest and prettiest maidens in Erin.”

The Crafty-Ones agreed the wisdom of this saying.

Messengers were sent to Lir at Finnaha…

*

*

to be continued…

Stellar Interiori

‘...One becomes Two, Two becomes Three...
And out of the Third comes One as the Fourth...’
- Mary the Prophetess.

77 Plate One of Duvet’s Apocalypse.

The Apocalypse of St John serves as more than just a Coda for the New Testament.
Its constant cycling and re-cyclying of ‘sevens’ also re-works the creation of Genesis, subsequent Hebraic festal traditions and the calendrical speculations of the Prophets.
We give below a taste of the seven-fold structure which runs throughout the whole of the mighty work…

“It was on the island of Patmos.
I was meditating on the seventh day when I heard behind me a voice as of many waters, “I am the beginning and end, first and the last.”

I turned to see who it was that spoke and I saw a figure resembling the Son of Man.
He was standing in the middle of seven golden candlesticks.
His beard and his hair were like white wool
His eyes were flames of fire.
His countenance was bright, as the sun when it shines at its height.
He was clothed in a long white robe.
About his breast went a golden girdle.
In his right hand he held seven stars.

His words rang out of his mouth clearly with the poignancy of a double-edged sword:

“I am he that lives and was dead.
I possess the keys to death and hell.
I shall live forever more.”

I fell down at his feet and they were like fine-brass forged in a furnace.

He laid his hands upon me, “You must write down all you see in a book, and send it
to the Seven Churches of Asia.
Let all the churches know that I am he who searches the reins of the heart and gives to every one, according to their works. Tell them to remember from whence they have fallen, to return to their first love lest I come upon them like a thief and remove their candlestick from its place, thus speaks the ‘Amen’: ‘I know your works, I know that you have a name, I know that you live, and yet, you are as the dead!’

To the guardian of the Church of Ephesus write,
‘He that is the beginning and end, first and the last says this:
‘I know your labours and your patience, yet this I have against you, that you love the Deeds of the Nicolaitans which I hate.
Turn within!
For to those that overcome the tribulations of the world will I give to eat of the tree of life which is in the paradise of God. Let those with ears hear the words of the Spirit.’”…

– Revelation.

The Kabbalah is a Ten not an Eleven.
The Octave is a Seven not an Eight.
The Tetragrammaton is a Three and not a Four.
The World is without but also within.

The Word is a Whole; the Not-Whole is the World.
How to make the World Whole?
‘Turn within.’

Metanoia…

Untitled3

 Future and Past?

Our Cube of Space constantly turns or flips.
One moment the Future holds sway
The next moment the Past.

The Past and Future are
‘Death and Hell’
The Old and the New,
But what of the True?

Where is the Present?
Where is the Now?
Where is the Spirit?

Within.

To be present is to be centred within…

Within is a Temple:
A temple is a Church;
A church is a Kirk:
A kirk is a Circle…

…But what kind of circle can be considered a Star?

*

 

Riddle Me Ree

2 - S France*

The device of riddling is common to most traditional cultures.

Maidens set riddles for their suitors: ‘What is sweeter than mead…?’ ‘What is whiter than snow…?’ ‘What is lighter than a spark…?’

Antagonists use riddles to settle their disputes: ‘Forty white horses on a red hill first they gnash then they champ then they stand still…?’ ‘What is blacker than the raven…?’ ‘What is swifter than the wind…?’

Divinities play hide and seek with their devotees within the miasmic form of riddles: ‘What dances on the surface of the water…?’ ‘What good did Man find on earth that God did not…?’ ‘What is sharper than the sword…?’

A riddle is one thing, or a collection of things, described as another thing, or a different collection of things.

It is an extended metaphor without its point of reference.

To solve a riddle is to gain clarity and rid one self of confusion.

‘Thunder before lightning…Lightning before cloud…land parching rain…give me a name.’

Solving a riddle allows one to recognise one thing in another and so transcend one or more of the polarities or categories that apparently govern the perceived world through language and thought.

A riddle then simultaneously highlights the rigidities of language and its potential flexibilities.

“A shepherd stands in a field with twenty sheep, how many feet?”

Riddles act like little bundles of experience to be untied by the uninitiated.
The riddler knows something you do not yet know…
Riddles straddle two or more different frames of reference.

Landscape features are given human attributes and provide ample food for the riddler.
‘I run never walk… my mouth never talks… my head never weeps… In my bed, I never sleep.’

The answers are rarely if ever immediately obvious… their solution requires contemplation.
Just like crossword clue solutions they are though obvious once you know them.
Unlike crossword clue solutions, there is more often than not a very practical purpose to their solution.

If a landscape can have human features then, why can’t a human have landscape features?

3-SFrance*

The Irish are particularly fond of the riddle and of the consciousness, which underpins its use.

When living in the village of Saughall on the border of Chester and Wales my brother-in-law and I were frequent visitors to the village pub which boasted two Stouts: Guinness and Murphy’s.

We prided ourselves on being able to tell the difference and would often buy one of each in order to discern which particular brew had been ‘kept best’.

Upon joining a couple of Irish chaps at their table one night they must have observed our traditional ritual with some amusement and challenged us to ascertain what they were drinking.

“You are both drinking Guinness,” we said after taking a sip of their drinks.

“I am drinking Guinness,” said one, “but that is Murphy’s” and then pointed at his friends drink.

“You are both drinking the same stout and it is Guinness,” we reiterated.

Then they swapped drinks and the one said again, “I am drinking Guinness but that is Murphy’s” and again pointed at his friends drink.

Still we did not ‘get it’ and our faces must have been a picture when Gerald Murphy took a sip of his stout and introduced himself.

A riddle is a trick played with words.

Niall of the Nine…

*

When young, Niall and his four step-brothers, Brian, Fiachra, Ailill and Fergus were given weapons by a smith and sent out hunting to prove their arms.

After losing their way in a forest, the five youths lit a fire to cook the game they had killed, and Fergus went in search of drinking water.

He came to a well guarded by a monstrous Black-Hag who would grant him the use of the well only on condition he gave her a kiss.

Fergus fled screaming…

Each of his three brothers in turn undertook the same errand but only Fiachra deigned to give the Black-Hag the merest brush of a kiss for which he was promised, in return, the merest of contacts with Tara.

Faced with the self same challenge, Niall kissed and embraced the Black-Hag who, when he looked again, had changed into the most beautiful woman in the world.

“Who are you?” asked Niall.

“I am Sovereignty,” replied the woman, “and your seed shall be over every clan.”

*

Noir

Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

She moved with the sinuous grace of a dancer or a thief; sleek and deadly. Her eyes were wide, feigning innocence. Hiding secrets… She licked her lips, as if she liked the taste of blood.

The crime scene didn’t faze her, yet it was the worst I had ever seen. In my job, you see things you don’t want to remember.

He’d been cornered, caught in a dead end trap with no way out.

Blood spattered high up the walls. Gobbets of rent flesh clung to the paintwork. Dismembered life festered in scarlet pools on the pale carpet. The only thing she’d left intact was a foot, just one.

God knows what she’d done with the rest of him…

He must have struggled… fought back…  the violence of the attack, the carnage…sickening.

This wasn’t just murder. This was slaughter.

I was glad I’d only had coffee. The clean-up was going…

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