Sunday, June 28, 2020

For You Jan

28th June 2020

For You Jan -  A Little Ramble.

You are with me, in my mediation, this morning.
You, dressed in purple,pink and red, 
making flames dance daintily or your face.
Diamond stars sparkle below your ears.

 Your smile, encourages, welcomes, comforts me 
good to see you, dear Jan . 
You ask me, with interest,  to tell you more, 
more about the Irish trip. 

More about those trad evenings 
you,  I know,  love everything Celtic. 
So, stay awhile, let me tell you about Jim o the Mill.
An old farmhouse cottage, thatched, hidden,

 along a boreen, way up in the mountains, not easy to get to. 
Round the outside of the house, lights, lanterns, balloons,
 in multitudinous colours, decorate the windows and walls,
like its Christmas.

 Cars line the lanes, fill the fields. 
Musicians gather, eagerly cradle their instruments, 
Ah, I see your eyes widen now, music is always your thing
Shall I go on? 

Others, greet with hugs, ask how each other are, like it’s a family affair.
 But we also  meet travellers who’ve come from afar
Africa, America, Germany, even Bulgaria.  World renowned is farmer Jim.
 A  micro bar, the size of a tiny parlour, open only on Thursdays

Serves Guinness and Cola and Irish whiskey.
We’ve become fond of the Guinness.  The evening unfolds
 music, poetry, storytelling fill the three small rooms. 
Bodies squeeze in too, sit on benches, on dirt floor, or perch on stairs. 

We are in the room where Kathleen is, my cousin, with her fiddle. 
A boy, about ten, with an accordian, as well as a head of curly, red hair,
An American with his guitar.  One begins to play a tune, others join in, 
even if they’ve never heard it. This is an Irish  ramble, all are welcome.

Anyone can play their instrument, or sing or recite poetry or tell a story.
 I look around. You’d love it, the atmosphere. 
In the open hearth the fire gives a soft glow to the spirit, 
far away places imagined in burning sods. 

On shelves, antique looking tea pots, family photos, crock jugs, books.
On walls, fiddles, art work done long ago by children now with grandchildren of their own, and is that a pitch fork, and beside it a hoe,  yes. 
We’re encouraged to join in with songs we know. I know a few, folk, rebel.

My cousin sings for me – Tipperary Far Away, I swallow holding back a river.
An American intones an old Irish balled, haunting,  
hits a hollow deep inside-  I’m off again. I imagine you with us dear Jan, 
shutting your eyes as you do when you listen with intent.

 We leave at 1.30 in the morning, no sign of the night coming to an end. Apparently, you’ll like this, if you’re there in the morning, 
when the sun comes up, they’ll cook you sausages and bacon.
Thanks for listening, until we meet again, so long, Jan, dear friend.


  1. Hello - Thanks for your comment on my blog. It's hard to lose friends and grieving seems to go on forever, but I've found that I carry my friends with me always. I have a group of posts on my blog titled 'Remembering' where I write about family and friends who are gone. It's a comfort to honour their memory and to try to share what was so special about them. I chose to do this on their birthdate rather than the date of death as it seems more positive.

    1. Hi Shelly, thanks for that. Yes, it's hard. I like your idea of collecting a group of posts to have them together. I had a quick look at your "Remembering" file. Such a good idea. And I love that you note their birthdays rather than the day they died. I need to think what I will do. They age we are, we'll be losing more as time goes on, both family and friends, so it might be a positive exercise for me to write in that organised way.


Please feel free to comment with advice and critique.