Alexander Averin

Monday 4 August 2008

Images of Scotland

The above are photographs of the Applecross Peninsula in the Western Highlands of Scotland. They were taken by my daughter who has just returned from a week's holiday there. They remind me of Paul Henry's paintings of Ireland.

Here is a poem that I have written in response to the MEME which was entitled I am from:

I am red from their blood and the passion spent

I am red from their blood and the passion spent

I sprung from the workhouse grey and from black London smog.
From scrubbed steps and tears,
intimidation and hardship.
Magdalen years.

I am from Ireland.
From the strong ones;
fighting stock, survivors of famine,
hunger and want.
From Britain’s infiltration attempting
Irish subjugation.

I too am born of the Kerry clay.
I am from red haired kings,
from O’Connor castles and fields of green
and farms and butter churns.
From the peat and the bog
From a few acres dug.

I am from poets and artists
and singers of songs
and dancers of jigs to
a glass or two.

I am from West Cork
where purple mountains meet beaches and the roar of their sea.
Westernmost coasts,
Holy Ghosts.

I am from shipwrecked Spanish galleons,
black haired pirates and
blue-eyed wild beauties of the night.

From Druids and tinkers
and Celtic fortune-tellers
and Sisters of Mercy wearing
silver rings and rosaries

I am red from their blood and the passion spent.

Cait O’Connor


CAMILLA said...

Hello Cait,

Beautiful pictures, and beautiful poem that you have wrote. Cait you must enter that poem into a book.

I have never been to Ireland or Scotland, although my HL does have Scots blood by birth. My neighbours in London were the salt of this earth, wonderful people, lady was from Cork and man was from Tipperary, they told me about some lovely Irish Stories and how beautiful it was.


CAMILLA said...

Forgot to say Cait, I do have Irish blood apparantly on my father's side, he had dark red hair so too my grandmother's.


Blossomcottage said...

The poem is beautiful and coupled with the lovely photographs it cheers up a miserable Tuesday morning in August.

Elizabethd said...

Beautifully written Cait. And super photos too, reminding me of the Mull of Kyntyre.

Unknown said...

They are beautiful photos. They remind me of the lake district where I lived when growing up. Makes me homesick now, though of course, I didn't appreciate it at the time.

Absolutely love the poem too. I agree with Camilla, you should enter it into a book or a poetry competition.

Frances said...

That is a fine piece of writing, Cait. Thank you for letting us see it. Wishing that perhaps it might be published where more would read it.

And ... your daughter's photos are magnificent!


Irene said...

Beautifully done. A real talent you are. Jealous I am.


Wow - did you really write that, Cait? It's lovely - so evocative. Never been to Ireland, but it sounds so full of myth and romance. Will have to remedy that some day.

Fabulous pictures, too.

Wisewebwoman said...

I feel you are my sister, Cait, everything you wrote is so familiar.
the winds of Dursey run through me.

Faith said...

Wow Cait fantastic photos, esp the first one. I will copy and email that poem to my daughter, its amazing. Her father's family from Cork.

Chris Stovell said...

What a very powerful post, Cait with some very strking images both in pictures and words.

Fennie said...

Ah! Love the poem which has a resonance in that my paternal grandmother came from Co Cork, though sadly she died before I was born so I never knew her. But I knew her sister, my great aunt and perhaps that's where my love of words comes from.

Kim said...

Gorgeous photos. I love your poem. Very nicely done.

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

Wonderful, wonderful poem! Thank you for sharing!

And those photos of Scotland make my heard ache to be there again! Maybe the dollar will recover sometime soon??

Claire said...

Applecross looks so beautiful and is somewhere I have never been although I have travelled a lot in Scotland and now must go here, maybe the next time.
The poem is thought provoking and your use of language is musical and clever.
A lovely post to read.

Fire Byrd said...

Like mother like daughter, you are both very talented.
A joy to read and look at.
I went to Ireland after my mother died to find my Irish heritage. I found the village she came from and the churchyard her family were all buried in.
It was one of my precious moments with my sons going there.

Anonymous said...

Go h-ana dheas ar fad a Cháit, is maith liom do fócal iontach.

Westerwitch/Headmistress said...

I have been to Applecross and it is a magical and majestic place.

Amazing poem . . . very evocative.

Withy Brook said...

The pictures have a supernatural feel. Very beautiful.
The poem is lovely too - I liked it all but Singers of songs
and Dancers of Jigs
particularly caught my attention. Thank you

Exmoorjane said...

Oh I thought for a moment t hose photos were of Connemara - they have a distinct similarity (and the West Coast was on my mind as some friends have returned from Galway and visited so many of my favourite spots out there.
Fantastic poem - quite spine-tingling.

Anonymous said...

It is all beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing this.