For Brigid, for Imbolc 💚 and for my own mother of course, a midwife, she birthed me in February

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Brigid’s Day

 

 

And so, it snows for her.

February opens white, to shine around

and she brings us together –

this midwife, this fertile goddess of the field.

How we love her, that she brings light.

 

And Seamus’ wife speaks on the radio

of how he loved Brigid particularly

and all womankind come to that,

which she celebrates by reading his love poem

The Clothes Shrine for Herself and herself.

And there is love on this day of Brigid

and we are not afraid.

 

 

note: Seamus Heaney’s last words were a text to his wife, Marie, saying nolle timere (don’t be afraid).

 

poem and photo Rose Cook

From my new book ‘Sightings’ which is available from me or:  info@greyhenpress.com


 

 

Keeping Quiet…let’s stop for a second

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Keeping Quiet             by Pablo Neruda

 

Now we will count to twelve
and we will all keep still.

For once on the face of the earth
let’s not speak in any language,
let’s stop for one second,
and not move our arms so much.

It would be an exotic moment
without rush, without engines,
we would all be together
in a sudden strangeness.

Fishermen in the cold sea
would not harm whales
and the man gathering salt
would look at his hurt hands.

Those who prepare green wars,
wars with gas, wars with fire,
victory with no survivors,
would put on clean clothes
and walk about with their brothers
in the shade, doing nothing.

What I want should not be confused
with total inactivity.
Life is what it is about;
I want no truck with death.

If we were not so single-minded
about keeping our lives moving,
and for once could do nothing,
perhaps a huge silence
might interrupt this sadness
of never understanding ourselves
and of threatening ourselves with death.
Perhaps the earth can teach us
as when everything seems dead
and later proves to be alive.

Now I’ll count up to twelve
and you keep quiet and I will go.

 

photo Rose Cook

February brings the beginning with cold snowdrops

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Snowdrop                                 by Ted Hughes

 
Now is the globe shrunk tight
Round the mouse’s dulled wintering heart.
Weasel and crow, as if moulded in brass,
Move through an outer darkness
Not in their right minds,
With the other deaths. She, too, pursues her ends,
Brutal as the stars of this month,
Her pale head heavy as metal.

 

 

photo Rose Cook

For February 1st, Candlemas, the Light Returns

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Imbolc – Poem for Brigid

 

 

February steps in cool,

clear light glances through doorways.

She leans on the threshold,

her eyes spark bright.

 

She brings green shoots,

the promise of fresh sillion in fields.

We still hear winter’s song, but draw

close to the fire with a smile.

 

Brigid is come with her blessing,

the earth breathes.

 

 

 

poem and photograph Rose Cook

Imbolc ~ Poem for Brigid

 

February steps in cool,

clear light glances through doorways.

She leans on the threshold,

her eyes spark bright.

 

She brings green shoots,

the promise of fresh sillion in fields.

We still hear winter’s song, but draw

close to the fire with a smile.

 

Brigid is come with her blessing,

the earth breathes.

Rose Cook