Tag Archives: interpretation

Field-Mouse…

*

Field-Mouse was out gathering wild-beans for winter when Buffalo came down to the meadow to graze.

‘He will mow down the long-grass with his prickly tongue and there will be no where left to hide,’ thought Field-Mouse, ‘I will offer him battle, like a man would do.’

“Ho, Buffalo!” squeaked Field-Mouse, “I challenge you to a fight.”

Buffalo went on grazing.

Field-Mouse repeated his challenge but still Buffalo went on grazing.

With his third challenge, Field-Mouse laughed contemptuously at Buffalo’s inaction.

“You had better keep still, little one,” said Buffalo, still grazing, “or I will come over there and step on you.”

“You can’t do it!” squeaked Field-Mouse in defiance.

“If you don’t be quiet I will certainly put an end to you,” said Buffalo, quietly.

“I dare you!” said Field-Mouse.

Before Field-Mouse had quite finished, Buffalo charged at him…

*

The House That Fish Built: Long-Horn O’Leary…

France & Vincent

*

…From the south came Long-Horn O’Leary and his host.

“Hail, the flame-hot hammerer: wielder of the red mallet,” said Father Fish as he lolloped alongside O’Leary’s company on foot, “When the men of Albion return from foreign lands you protect their rear so that an assailant may not spring past you, nor over you, what then should prevent the Champion’s Portion of Red-Hill-Hall being yours ?”

Said Long-Horn O’Leary, “why, if it isn’t that dullard Fish Face, come to pester me with his eccentric wit,” he laughed aloud and his company set up a roar and raised their swords.

“Truly, the Champion’s Portion of the house I built is not that of a dullard’s house,” smiled Father Fish, “belonging to it are five-score cakes of wheat cooked in honey, and a cow-lord full seven years old; since it was a calf neither heather nor twig-tops have entered its lips…

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Broken Fortress…

HM15 1281*

PC 963 Kraas turned and walked head-long into the sea breeze.

Her hair flicked in the wind like rampant flames.

“You know, I can’t help feeling we’ve missed a trick with this one.”

“It’s mentioned in the book,” replied Jaw-Dark pensively, “and in any case it’s a pleasant enough spot.” He paused and bent down to look through a large eye-shaped ‘blow-hole’ in the promontory.

“What’s that?” said Kraas.

“Well, that depends…” said Jaw-Dark.

“That depends upon what?”

“…Upon your perspective,” finished Jaw-Dark.

“Nothing is ever straight forward with you is it?”

“The Irish name for this and other similar landscape features is Poll na Seantuinne.”

“Which means?”

“‘Hole of the Old Wave’.”

Just then the sea crashed beneath the promontory and the foaming waves, in the mouth of the sea cavern, a hundred feet below could be clearly seen through the ‘chasm-hole’.

“Seems an apt description,” said Kraas, “if a tad un-nerving.” Her gaze followed the slow drag of the tide and then lifted to the sky where wisps of grey cloud scudded on the wind, “in the beginning,” she said, “everything was chasm and chaos.”

“There is though another interpretation.”

“Which is?”

Poll na Sean Tiene means ‘Hole of the Old Fire’.”

“Okay, I can see where that might fit in with some of their concerns. Especially with all this baleful eye stuff.”

“Personally though I prefer the third alternative…”

“Ever the story teller,” smiled Kraas, “Well, I’m waiting!”

Poll na Seantuine,  is the ‘Hole of the Old Woman.”

Kraas’ smile turned to a grimace, “Well, I wouldn’t go shouting that particular preference from the cliff tops if I were you,” she said through the grimace, and then added more seriously, “so which one is it?”

“Unfortunately for us and also quite possibly for them too, it is more than likely that it is all three of them.”

*

Free Passage?…

 

*

‘It’s easy,’ she had said, ‘you believe the other-world to be greater than this one…’

‘Do I?’

‘You believe those that have passed can still see you…’

‘That’s true.’

‘…but you can’t see them?’

‘Not ordinarily, no.’

‘So there you go.’

Inescapable logic.

‘Yet, you believe life to be greater than death?’

‘I knew there would be a catch, one would certainly hope so.’

‘So what’s your problem? Get up, and walk forth… into life.’

Easy to say, much harder to do, but the corridor did look different…

The stone was gold-suffused-light.

Out of the old world into the blue…

*

A Trigonometry of Seeming…

*

The gnomon holds a special position

in the annals of architecture:

It is to time what the fulcrum is to movement.

*

Would, then, movement be anything without time?

*

And yet, for the gnomon

to tell us anything,

we have to move around it…

*

Continuously

shifting our perspective,

before the position

is finally shadowed forth…

 

Armoury Show…

*

The prosperous town of Armore was built next to a forest.

Late one night Old-Man-Log came out of the forest and sat down in the middle of the town’s market square.

He opened up the palm of his right hand and started cackling.

The next morning as the sun came up he was still sitting there cackling at the palm of his hand.

The towns-folk of Armore gathered around him to learn the source of Old-Man-Log’s amusement.

There in the middle of his palm was a little red man who was dancing.

“Who is that little red fellow?” asked the townsfolk falling over themselves to get a better look  at him.

“Why, his name is Mammon,” said Old-Man-Log, “see how he dances and spins for your amusement growing redder and redder?”

“Let me see…”

“And me…”

So it went with the towns-folk of Armore as they pushed and shoved and trampled each other in order to get a better look at the spectacle being played out before them…

At the end of the day when Old-Man-Log returned to the forest forty of the towns-folk lay dead.

*

The next day Old-Man-Log was sitting in the market square again and this time the crush to see his show left eighty people dead.

The day after that, the death toll was one-hundred-and-sixty.

Finally Old-Man-Log said, “People of Armore, why do you put up with this day after day. Don’t be killed. Pick up stones and stone me.”

Without hesitation the towns-folk of Armore immediately picked up stones and threw them at Old-Man-Log.

They stoned him from all directions and before long he lay dead.

*

But then the dead man’s body began to stink.

The stench was so bad that people fainted and died.

The wind blew and wherever it carried the foul smell people died.

The dead man opened his mouth and spoke, “People of Armore, why do you put up with this. Don’t be killed. Bring your hauling ropes and haul me away.”

*

Without hesitation the towns-folk of Armore immediately ran for their hauling ropes and tied them around the body of Old-Man-Log.

They began to tug the ropes but Old-Man-Log’s body was hard to shift.

The towns-folk tugged harder and one of the ropes snapped. The men pulling the rope fell on top of each other and died.

Another rope snapped killing more people and then another with the same result.

The dead man opened his mouth again, “People of Armore, why do you put up with this. Don’t be killed. Sing me my song.”

He sang it to them, “Pull our log/Old-Man-Log/Pull our log…”

*

Altogether the towns-folk sang the dead man’s song and the body began to move…

It moved so quickly, sliding along the ground that whenever anyone stopped for breath they were run over by the body and killed.

When at last Old-Man-Log was sung back into the forest the few towns-folk that remained returned to their homes to sleep.

Next morning when the towns-folk of Armore awoke they remembered nothing of Old-Man-Log.

It was as though they had been intoxicated.

*

Threshold…

rs-266*

We live with hidden presences.

The village street, its air heavy under the hot sun, its surface baked hard beneath our feet, is lined with dwellings.

Vessels of the, as yet, unknown…

Before we enter any one of these home-steads we are confronted by a labyrinth painted in brightly coloured sand.

As the morning sun rose through the sky the Mistress of the House laid out this elaborate design and we cannot now enter her dwelling without passing through this pattern, the new focus, of those auspicious natural forces.

A protective screen now guards the home.

We cannot see that screen, we can only see the focus.

A reflection of the inner workings of cosmos has been externalised at the boundary: that line which divides inner and outer; the pure form from the purely chaotic or accidental.

The boundary is always fraught with danger.

It represents the primal division at the heart of all things.

A wholeness has been rent so that creation can occur.

This labyrinth is a symbol but it is also both more-and-less-than any symbol. As the day progresses it will be worn away by many feet entering and exiting the house. The coloured sand will mingle with the dust of the street. The symbol will lose its true form like the stone temples and that illusory stability which sees them abandoned when their utility is spent. They are both constructed, despite the appearance, merely to capture the momentary, unpredictable reality of the unseen.

Labyrinth and temple express an untold reality as that which is hidden but held in external form.

Both are held open for the invisible yet still, in other ways, sensed powers.

Both then hold these powers in partial and temporary control.

Both mark a transition from inner to outer and suggest movement to come…

Like all vessels of divinity they are potential turning points.

They contain and obfuscate.

Imbued with powers of their own they yet point beyond themselves to the divine wholeness.

We forget this at our peril.

*

A Border-Land of Spirits…

*

We do not doubt the immortal nature of the Spirit in Man.

Neither do we care to speculate on its probable state or condition in any future life.

The Spirit, breathed into Man by the Great Mystery,

ultimately returns to the one who gave it.

After being freed from the body it is everywhere and pervades all nature.

So much reverence is due to the disembodied spirit we do not name the dead aloud.

Ohiyesa