irish book

“Fairies with gossamer wings,
Bring forth beauty, grace and joyful things.
Fairies of the earth are caretakers of our soil, water and trees,
They watch over beautiful creatures such as bears, bunnies and bees.
Fairies ask that you breathe in and appreciate the vantage point from which you stand,
Then trod carefully and respectfully with each intentional step you make across this beautiful land.”

I once got into a grudging Nice Off with a neighbour.  This crotchety old bastard had moved in across from my grandma and within a week became legendary for his sniping about every tiny thing.  Kids sitting on their front steps weren’t respectful.  Someone’s cat got into his yard.  The mailman stopped in front of his parking space for two seconds.  The man was impossible.

So I baked him a cake.  Not like a Duncan Hines box cake either.  I made an angel food cake with whipped cream and strawberries between the layers and lemon buttercream frosting entirely from scratch.  I was and still am crap at cake decorating, but pale yellow frosting with star shaped sprinkles on top looks pretty good no matter how uncoordinated you are.  Then I put on my nicest clothes, marched over, and apologised for not welcoming him to the neighbourhood sooner.

He slammed the door in my face.  Then the next day he came over with cookies.  I offered to mow his lawn.  He told me he wouldn’t pay me then invited me in for lemonade.  I took him cupcakes I had “accidentally” made too many of.  He loaned me a book on Irish history.  I read him the newspaper.  He (rudely) told me how to improve my English presentation.  I raked up his leaves.  He told me stories about his time in Korea.  Eventually the fucker gave in and actually started being half-way pleasant.

Drip

In the heat of that night time train
Her wandering eyes found mine
My heart raced.
Darting from the black moonlit nothingness outside
To her olive skin that dripped.

My mouth was stiched and sewed in silence

As she dripped, dripped, dripped away into that black moonlit nothingness

Only stories and magic really endure. How tiny one’s area of understanding is art teaches one perhaps better than philosophy. There is a kind of despair involved in creation which I am sure any artist knows all about. In art, as in morality, great things go by the board because at the crucial moment we blink our eyes. When is the crucial moment? Greatness is to recognize it and be able to hold it and to extend it. But for most of us the space between ‘dreaming on things to come’ and 'its is too late, it is all over’ is too tiny to enter. And so we let each thing go, thinking vaguely that it will always be given to us to try again. Thus works of art, and thus whole lives of men, are spoilt by blinking and moving quickly on.
—  Iris Murdoch, The Black Prince