CONNEMARA

Air heavy with the sweet tang of salt and seaweed.

Riotous hedgerows bursting with orange crocosmia, creamy pink honeysuckle and purple thistle heads.

Splashes of red fushia buzzing loudly as unseen bees do their work.

A lone cow stands upon a rocky outcrop.

Water softly lapping and slapping seashore stones.

Early morning crisscross trails of the overnight transatlantic flights as they finally find the North Atlantics edge,

Each flight tearing a rip in a wraparound sky,

Of cloudscapes like celestial cities.

Magnificent castellations and turrets and cruising spaceships,

Reflected perfectly in the still water below.

The horizon folding the image at its centre.

A hurl of rain against the wall of the cottage,

Twenty minutes later a burst of yellow sunshine.

Hidden religs – uneven fields of bones and raggedy assemblies of holy relics and plastic flowers.

Agus an Gaeilge – beautiful guttural sounds gurgling in the throats of local men in the fields.

The smell of turf fires in August,

At dusk the plaintiff cry of a curlew,

And the Connemara light, especially in evening, as the sun dips below the horizon on this western edge of Europe.

A LITTLE POEM

Sometimes you just gotta write a little poem!

THE SPRING GARDEN
The memory of the morning’s heavy downpour clings to the stones.
The garden refreshed by the rain,
A freshly painted landscape.
The air is full of the fluttering of bird’s wings
As they skitter back and forth.
While others perch on branches,
Captivated, as am I
By the simple beauty of my suburban garden.
Their spring songs dance upon the breeze
The scent of lilac ebbs and flows
At once all is tranquil and yet busy.
Unseen tiny animals go about their day,
Burrowing and working
A swallow dips and swoops low over the grass
Summer is just beyond the blue horizon

Be The Change….

Does this scenario sound familiar to you?

You get up in the morning groaning silently about the night being too short. You pull back the curtains and the sky is grey and a definite dampness pervades the air. You think ‘another colourless Irish day’. The news comes on and brings horror from all parts of the globe. Before leaving the house you have surrounded yourself in a blanket of negativity.

A little later, when you casually exchange ‘pleasantries’ with the paper man or fellow mothers at the school gates, you moan about the weather. Your first proper conversation of the day will no doubt focus on the horrors in the news. And so on it goes.

Let’s replay the scene.

Same morning – same news – same weather. But as you gaze out the window you give thanks for a warm and comfortable house. Instead of listening to the news, switch to music in the morning. Put on your favourite CD or tune into Lyric FM. Greet everyone you meet with a smile and a cheerful comment – even one tinged with irony… “at least it is not snowing”. Spread positivity and humour.

We are surrounded by negative stories in the media; stories of atrocities, wars and suffering. We need to pray for peace in the world but there is little to be gained by constantly immersing ourselves in images and stories that are horrific and deeply upsetting. Remember that the media gives us a completely lopsided view of the world. There are ‘armies’ of good and kind people working for the benefit of their fellow man and for the good of this wonderful planet we live on. There is lots of good stuff going on that more than balances out the bad. Focus on the positives and cull the amount of time you spend reading or listening to the ‘news.’ There is a saying in healing which is “change the way you look at things and the things you look at will change.”

We create our own reality. If we choose to see only the dark and the negative, that is how our world will be! So starting today make a conscious effort to look for beauty, joy and positivity everywhere. Slow down a little and listen – are there birds singing over the noise of the traffic? Slow down and open your eyes – even the weeds growing in the cracks in the pavement have beautiful flowers. Go for a walk in the rain and feel how the rain feels on your skin.

We live in a world abundant with beauty and joy. We have forgotten how to look for it. So remember that life is good. Carry that message with you every day and open your heart to all you meet so that they cannot help but be infected by your inner joy. Smile at everyone you pass.

It was Gandhi who said “be the change you want to see in the world” and if you are smiling now you have changed the world already.