Sunday, October 31, 2010

A thousand years passed without note...

Long since did the fellowship of the ring part company in the Grey Havens. Gandalf, Frodo and Bilbo set sail with the high elves unto Valinor whilst the hobbits left behind returned home. Samwise Gamgee and Rosie, Pippin and Merry are now but distant a memory of the hobbit consciousness. The songs sung in the Green Dragon of the heroism and valour that saves Middle Earth from Sauron now long forgotten.

The king had indeed returned at the end of the third age and with him came once again order and a return to the pastoralist notions that Hobbits so welcome. The shadow had failed utterly at the end and it retreated behind the impenetrable passes of the east to gnaw on its defeat and brood for a millennia on revenge.

So what now of the Elves and Dwarves, Hobbits and Ents and Men and Orcs? Here is the story of the fall of all to the shadow that ended the fourth age of middle earth...but it is not the part of this story to tell of the intervening years through this age. Of the great, enduring peace and the swift rise of men to now take dominion over all others in middle earth. But in the end men faltered and waned despite the promise shown at the inception of all they created. So it is now as the world changes and once again a dread creeps into the forests and plains that the shadow has again returned does the story begin.

Friday, October 22, 2010

It's not been a great few months but life goes on in its own unstoppable way. We buried my Dad Tuesday and had a wake at my brother’s house. Dad would have been in his element with all those meat pies and ham sandwiches. Still don't understand how people can be warm and vibrant and then gone in minutes. It is so like the summer as it passes to autumn.

I have to confess I was late for my father’s funeral. I thought I knew the way but got mixed up. I turned around and came back and passed a hearse and car heading back the way I had just come. Got to be them I thought so I did another swift turn and followed them. After a few miles down a narrow country lane they stopped at a picturesque church and I realised it was another funeral. Luckily two hikers were passing and they gave me the correct directions. I was mortified at the time but somewhat funny in retrospect. I wrote and did the eulogy for the service - it is only shortbut it was so hard to compose. It made up for being late anyway. If I am glad of anything it is that he did not suffer and for once we all came together as a family and did him proud.

Here’s the eulogy

Dad was born in 1933 on the 21st June to Bridget and Thomas and was soon after joined by his 2 sisters and a brother. Life was hard then with the war and rationing but it was easier than it was going to be once he’d married mother and between them raised seven children. They didn’t do it all without help and to those that helped – we say thank you. It was some family tree they made and it continues to grow strong.

Dad worked for over fourty years in the local paper mill and despite what modern medicine tells us now you can actually go a long way on the wrong diet. He was robust in constitution and apart from one problem he was always healthy right up to the end. This was in no small part due to the loving care of Trevor and Eileen and we his other children thank you for taking such good care of dad for so many years.

Dad like the now falling autumn leaves, you let go all your familiar ties and started a new adventure. Have a swift journey to it now and say a big hello to Mum who’s been waiting for so long to see you. Follow now where your heart leads you and think of us all as you walk together again in places that are forever blessed in springtime. Oh and make sure you enjoy the peace and quiet while it lasts. Goodnight and God bless.

You might have noticed all the government cuts announced yesterday – wonder how they'll affect us over the coming years. The only thing sure is it won’t be in a good way, but just how much may it hurt us remains to be seen. More taxes and carry on working till you drop seems to be the outward message from it all. Not that it is just us in the UK. The whole world has gone into austerity mode. Well so long as I can eat simply; but well, and keep warm I shan't really mind.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Well here we are in the middle October so much sooner than I imagined. How time flies so soon across a year and it’s not shaping up to be a great year so far. I think we all become a little more obsessed with time as we get older. I remember watching the film ‘the Time machine’ by H G Wells as a child. I was amazed by the shot where the machine flies into the future and the seasons come and go in the blink of an eye. As I grow older it feels a little akin to that now. Where did the spring and summer go? How come it is getting dark so early and why is the morning drenched in cool misty sunrise so late. Everything becomes a why as you grow older and despite all the thought no answers come.
Bathed in stardust and set adrift on the solar winds ride the Valkyries into a red sunset. Lofty helms grace grim countenances and their feminine guiles are not toothless; being girded by stout shields and broadswords. They are fell maidens, ghostly white as a snowy wilderness with eyes blue as a clear sky looking with a sharp perception deep into the clarity of a greater understanding. No injustice can blanch or intimidate these sirens and all pain is swift to set right under their gaze. They stand with one foot in the heavens and the other under the sea. They are caught inexorably between two worlds and the pull of the heart between both is like the flow of the spring tides. For they come to earth only to gather up the fallen and bear them swift to Valhalla.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Dad (1933-2010)

Like the now falling leaves; you also let go of all your familiar ties and drifted away through the sunshine into a new adventure. Have a swift journey Dad and say hello to Mum for us. She’s being waiting for you to join her for so long. Think of us as you walk together again in dappled lanes that are forever blessed in springtime. For you have left our world the colder now you’ve gone.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Wed 6th Oct 2010

Mike’s off to see Michael Buble tonight in Manchester so I took Robbie out on my own for a lovely walk in the woods. Robbie for the greatest part is gentle and loving and he is very well behaved in the house. His training outdoors needs to be done sooner rather than later though. He’s a tad too enthusiastic off the lead.

I am beginning to warm to this time of year now especially as the beech tree leaves fall to the floor covering all the paths in a russet carpet. It helps that the weather is currently mild and dry and the colours are fantastic already; I think the autumn will be very vivid this year.

I wrote a nice thing at work but forgot (again) to email it home so here is a piece of it. Don’t know where the thought of Valkyries came from.

Bathed in stardust and set adrift on the solar winds ride the Valkyries. Lofty helms grace grim countenance and their feminine guiles are not toothless; being girded by stout shields and broadswords. They are fell maidens who injustice cannot blanch and are swift to set right into any wrong. They stand with one foot in the heavens and the other under the sea. Caught inexorably between two worlds and the pull of the heart between both is like the flow of the tides.