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SOAR Y MYNYDD

Where we rest
Deep in the mountains:
Soar y Mynydd

Hung in autumn air
Its white walls glowing:
Riverside chapel

Neat as it may be:
A congregation of leaves
Patiently waiting.

Soar y Mynydd.
Even when people have drifted away
The river sings hymns.

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To Wake in Winter

TO WAKE IN WINTER

To wake in the long darkness
And feel the slow cold seep in.

To love, and to war against those
We do not love, is not enough.

Drained and wan, the ache of it.
The decay of worn roads and reasons.

The ravens are silent as they push
Against the folds of cloud.
The hills ripple but they do not rise.

We miss the touch of sudden sunlight
And a simple purpose to go on.

Is patience a curse or a virtue?

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Mandala of Forgetfulness

COFIO 5 (mabinogi lesson)
(Mandala of Forgetfulness, Third Branch)

Who would have thought it?
In the empty deserted fortress
Not a sound nor a flicker.
Those thin chains of gold reaching up forever,
The fountain’s cup suspended.
We can not fail to drink its clear, cold waters.
We can not fail to become entranced
And held, perfect and still, out of time, insensible.
The fortress of memory revolves about itself.
The thin gold from hand to lip to tongue to eye
All locked up, the mind silenced:
A boat that is not a boat
Upon a still sea that is not a sea.
Let the leaves fall. Let the petals fall.
Let the poppies and the roses fall.
Let the rain fall, and the sunset and the stars.
Let a dawn come free from pain
Where memories are not chains nor burden,
Nor hold us immovable.
Just one sip now, though, just one more.
And the earth axis will shift under us
And the crack of thunder from the cloudless sky.
We are born to become lost,
Born to forget
Adrift in summer
Remembering spring.

It is the changing light
That is making the distant hills dance.

It is the falling voice of crows
That weds autumn to the stilling air.

It is the accumulated weight of days
That pales the valley oaks to gold.

It is the forgetting of our own dreams
That fills us so with pathless grey dawn.

It is only hour by hour in the garden’s work
That we learn a steady, silent patience.

Bending down to earth between a hum of flowers
Doing only what can be done,
Doing only what is timely.

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THREE FOR ANOTHER WINTER

There is a short time
When beauty and bravery seem enough –
Before the bracken browns
And curls like a snarled lip,
Before the grass withers
And the flocks grow thin,
Before the wise have nothing more to say,
And the boasting grows more foolhardy.

Windless green valley
Golden in low cloud.
Leaves let go.
The year ripples
Dark and light,
Its slow thoughts
Swimming then falling
Into deeper silence.
Upon a lake
That is not a lake
Rests a boat
That is not a boat.

Mountains fall
Forests fall
Before the cold of it
And the roar
Of its whiteness.

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Blackthorn Spell

BLACKTHORN SPELL

The cracked wind
Azure blue.

A tumbled sky
Ivory-scented.

Ice
Ashes
Alabaster
The Hunter’s hand.

A collection of images that I have put on a small blackthorn bowl, revolving around the time of early Spring and the blossoming of the thorn. The bowl is not quite finished yet- I am adding a verse from Song of Songs in Welsh and working out whether to put the English translation on as well.

Llangammarch Blaze

Llangammarch Blaze

There now, lay it all down,
The soft memory and the memory of hard bone.
After the year’s first true frost
A dead sheep lies in the field becoming a dance of hawks and ravens.
And on a lonely hillside unremarked
A blaze has born the babies away.
A smudge of smoke and the light of morning
Is no prayer of peace to ones who wait
Empty-hearted for better news.
The village, warm now in sun, silent.
Thoughts unthought of before – friends vanished,
Those known, now unplaced, a hollowness
Around memory clung to.
It is an uncertain anchor to hold on to –
This world that blinks apart from day to day.
Should we rise and flow like the oak leaves
On the cold dark currents of the Irfon?
Or wrap around like ivy, cling like lichen bloom
To this weathered stone.
We are a thin soil that the wind will blow and the waters leach.
The babies are gone who should be dancing.
The mothers silent, slowly dissappearing.
Pick it back to the bare bones.
Feed the world with our ripped out sorrow.
We are nothing. But we were loved.
Once named, now melted back to everything.
A thin soil on scarred stone.
Golden are the tree tops, a palest blue sky.
The ravens dance in their ring, in and out,
While the sun still shines,
While the sun still shines.

written as the news was emerging about the great and tragic loss in our small village. A family house destroyed by fire in the night, a few children escaping, but many more lost. Llangammarch now besieiged by hordes of prying press and film crews.

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