Tuesday, August 28, 2007

St. Augustine of Hippo

Late have I loved you, O Beauty ever ancient, ever new, late have I loved you! You were within me, but I was outside, and it was there that I searched for you. In my unloveliness I plunged into the lovely things which you created. You were with me, but I was not with you. Created things kept me from you; yet if they had not been in you they would have not been at all. You called, you shouted, and you broke through my deafness. You flashed, you shone, and you dispelled my blindness. You breathed your fragrance on me; I drew in breath and now I pant for you. I have tasted you, now I hunger and thirst for more. You touched me, and I burned for your peace.

- Augustine, Confessions, 10.27

It's beautiful, isn't it?

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Of Course!

You're Ireland!

Mystical and rain-soaked, you remain mysterious to many people, and this makes you intriguing. You also like a good night at the pub, though many are just as worried that you will blow up the pub as drink your beverage of choice. You're good with words, remarkably lucky, and know and enjoy at least fifteen ways of eating a potato. You really don't like snakes.

(quiz nicked from Doxy, who nicked it from Eileen)

Take the Country Quiz
at the Blue Pyramid

The Book Quiz

You're The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe!
by C.S. Lewis
You were just looking for some decent clothes when everything changed quite dramatically. For the better or for the worse, it is still hard to tell. Now it seems like winter will never end and you feel cursed. Soon there will be an epic struggle between two forces in your life and you are very concerned about a betrayal that could turn the balance. If this makes it sound like you're re-enacting Christian theological events, that may or may not be coincidence. When in doubt, put your trust in zoo animals.

Take the Book Quiz
at the Blue Pyramid.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

On The Beach

is the title of the long-awaited blog by David Charles Walker, with absolutely transcendent music– and dancing! He even has a triad of his own devising worthy of any Irish bard:

"Three transfiguring events:
• the passing of a friend,
• the glory of a transformed night sky,
• Christ upon the mountain peak."

Put on your dancing shoes and enjoy!

Three Things

Three sparks that kindle love: a face, demeanour, speech.

"Three Things" are traditional Irish triads.

Monday, August 6, 2007

The Bard of Armagh

I am feeling very sentimental and sad because Tommy Makem, the great Irish singer, the Bard of Armagh, has died.

He sang with the Clancy Brothers for some years before going solo. He was the voice of the Children of Ireland in Exile, for anyone who had even a drop of Irish blood, or who wished he did. Anyone whose heart soars at the sound of a plaintive penny whistle, or the sweet, lyrical strains of a fiddle.

"We know their dream; enough
To know they dreamed and are dead;
And what if excess of love
Bewildered them till they died?"

And so, in honor of Tommy, I imagine everyone coming together for a wild, joyous ceilidh. Oh, it will be held at Mad Priest's-- that way he couldn't make any excuses about the journey. Can you see the joyful crowd on the dance floor, with Grandmère leading the way so dignified and grand in her midnight blue silk taffeta, and Wormwood's Doxy cutting a very fine figure indeed (in red, of course), so that all the lads would line up for a dance, and she'd break their hearts by the end of the evening. Everyone would fall hushed to see Cecilia dancing so sweetly with her Beloved during a slow, sad ballad, and wipe their eyes and remember what it was like to be young and newly in love. Ellie would wear out a pair of red dancing shoes and drop exhausted into a chair, to be revived with ices and shandy. Mad Priest would eye the scene with a proprietary air from his seat of honor and smile graciously on all. But the real stars of the dance floor would be ePiscoSours and Counterlight, whose sophisticated dance moves would amaze the crowd. (Lisabeth would try, but you know what they say...)

Me, I'm behind the bar pouring pints, much too shy to venture onto the dance floor...(but towards the cusp of the evening, when most everyone is feeling blurred and happy from too much Jameson's, if Padre Mickey asked very sweetly??...no, perhaps not.)

And then, at the end, when they played "The Parting Glass," we would all rise and sway gently to the music, and remember what it is about this frustrating, bewildering, mortal coil that keeps us all from wanting to shuffle it off quite yet. That is, in a word, Love.

And now, please join the party!

Simply Marvelous.

The Mad One has a particularly lovely Midnight Jukebox that I highly recommend. Of, course, I am behind the times but I had a difficult time loading his pages over the weekend. So please listen if you haven't already.

Feast of the Transfiguration

I send you to Padre Mickey and Grandmère Mimi for some lovely thoughts on the day.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Three Things

Three fewnesses that are better than plenty: a fewness of fine words, a fewness of cows in grass, a fewness of friends around ale.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

St. Sithney, Patron of Grendel and other Mad Dogs

I am reliably informed by Nicholodeon (of the aptly named DOGma reVIEW) that today is the name-day of St. Sithney, patron saint of mad dogs, and this is confirmed by the 13th century martyrology of Exteter Cathedral. According to Nicholas Orme (no relation to Nicholodeon, I think) in The Saints of Cornwall, God offered to make St. Sithney the patron of young girls. Sithney, alarmed that he would get no respite from the young lasses pestering him for finery and husbands, wisely backed off, choosing a less dangerous tutelage, that of mad dogs!

Mad and sick dogs were taken to drink from St. Sithney's spring near Helston, in Cronwall, to cure them.

Here is a photo of my very own mad dog, Grendel the Misanthropic Dog.

Friday, August 3, 2007

When I have Fears that I may Cease to Be

When I have fears that I may cease to be
Before my pen has glean'd my teeming brain,
Before high-piled books, in charactery,
Hold like rich garners the full ripen'd grain;
When I behold, upon the night's starr'd face,
Huge cloudy symbols of a high romance,
And think that I may never live to trace
Their shadows, with the magic hand of chance;
And when I feel, fair creature of an hour,
That I shall never look upon thee more,
Never have relish in the faery power
Of unreflecting love;--then on the shore
Of the wide world I stand alone, and think
Till love and fame to nothingness do sink.

--John Keats