Tag Archives: Tim Hawthorn

Caer Sidhe

Let us extol the illustrious deeds
Of rough brow’d giants and knights on proud steeds
Questing the Grail.

Across the land named Summer they ride
To reach the shores of these twelve hides
That never paid Geld.

King Arviragus granted to Joseph,
Uncle of Jesus, freedom from sherriffs
And royal judges.

Arrogant Tudors took Somerset’s plums
And gave them to those with oversized thumbs;
Their loyal drudges.

Through aerial photos and recent research,
They’ve found some strange shapes in these ancient earthworks
And an old ditch.

Was it laid out in some mystical path
By Sumerian ancients? Well you may laugh …
But not too much.

Did light-line ley forces lay out the landscape
To form in courses of meaningful shape?
Or was it all planned?

It’s too good to be true, too big to be seen
And what on earth can all these pictures mean?
Who understands?

Castle of Wonders, if giants you seek
Then follow the hunter to where dragons sleep
And dreams are made.

Before the Briton with brave cultured hand
Albion’s giants this realm did command.
Not all were slain.

So listen while I tell you a story
Of giants and bean-stalks, the whole jack-a-nory
In the form of a song.

It won’t take a moment, well, maybe twelve minutes,
One for each giant and then we’ll be finished.
It won’t take long.

Came over the bridge from Ivythorn ridge
A beautiful deer, with no sound.
The white dogs of death all panting for breath
Burst through, red-eared, with one bound.
And now we begin, with the Nephilim,
As the Hooded One bends his bow.
He aims past the hounds and beyond the bounds
Of all we can be and know.

Breathe to become, newly burst through the boundaries.
Blazing brow be reborn, boldly blossom in the dawn!
Feel the bliss, be as one. Discipline wins the marathon.
She is bright as the moon, sweeps all bare with her broom.

The lady glides o’er the rippling sea
On the Polden’s western side.
The cradle wind blew the sea-chest of Lugh
And Taliesin’s hide.
The wind will whip King Solomon’s ship
That Pedrog and Bridget brought
Across the languid grey lagoon
To landfall at Dundon Fort.

Laugh for your life, let the wind be your lullaby,
Lilting over the lake, linger long in its wake.
Look, listen, leap, little gold do we ever keep;
Listen, learn, it’s your turn to leave more than you take.

To enter the gate of the royal estate
Needs knowledge of natures nine.
Mananan’s domain, the wind and the rain
And the infinite stormy brine.
The naked knight is called on to fight
And arms, once denied, are sought.
Mighty Titans this very night
Will feel the knife and sword.

Tree trunk align with the spine of the universe.
Roots drink deep from the earth, like starlight your leaves shine!
Hanging all in between what you do and you really mean
Are the keys to the Tree of Life’s great mystery.

Venerable Bran sheds a tear in the sun
For the raven whose fate is foresworn.
The foolish march hare flees to Somerton Fayre
As the fawn and calf are born.
Mountainous Bran, with a fleet on each arm,
Whose force-field would fail if disclosed.
Valiant Lugh, Fomorians slew,
With one stone was Balor deposed.

Float, flutter, fly, face the fear of the day you die.
Pierce the veil, break the gaol, to the victor the tale!
Vindication will come, though the vain may confuse the dumb,
follow fools, you will fall; trust your heart, you will rule them all.

The Wimble Toot witch lives just down the ditch
In a tumble-down past Teifi’s Bend.
She puts up a fight to our surly knight
But he overcomes her in the end.
The spider she spins and silver swans swim
As he studies her secret arts:
The right use of shield; to ride in the field;
And how to strike straight to the heart.

Set aside space for the sacred in everything,
The soothing of sorrows, the suffering’s done.
Sleep, sweet soul, soft the soil nourished for swelling.
Soon the seed that was sown will be grown in the spring-time sun!

Fair is Olwen ferch Yspaddaden
Our hero’s golden-haired prize.
From owl-borne dreams, her prince she has seen
With a raven’s wakeful eyes.
The greatest quest has yet to test
Our hero’s perfidious heart.
Sings the white dove of unselfish love
For without it you’d better not start.

High on a hill is the home of my family.
With hedgerows hemmed in, I am haunted by dreams.
I hear the harp playing heavenly harmonies.
You shall have honey to feed the haughty May Queen.

By Lydford Green, the lightning struck tree
Will point us to the Grail.
Mordred aggrieved did treachery lead
And double death did he deal.
Where Monarch’s Way cuts the Roman road through
The sacred barge set sail.
Pendragon was borne to Avalon’s shores
His damage for to heal.

Do you dare to dive in to the darkness so dizzying?
Deal with despair and the demons you bear?
Drink the nectar divine from the depths of imagining;
Make truth your devotion and open the door to your dreams!

Here’s a tale of two tribes who both knew the truth,
But told it to different tunes:
The one side would hum to the tone of the sun;
The other the timbre of moon.
The Baltonsborough team, in temper so mean,
Attacked the next terrified town.
This troublesome mob on sharp thistles trod
And tangled in thorns, turned around.

Let’s call a truce and take stock of life’s treasury,
temper the steel with the teachings we learn.
The straight and the thin only lead us to misery,
For the truth sometimes twists, but mostly it tends to turn.

On West Pennard Hill the cauldron is filled
And poetry’s nine senses made.
The salmon prevails in Avalon’s vale
Beneath the orchards’ shade.
The unicorn cools its feet in the pools
By the coppice on the shore.
Cocky Jack quick strikes out with his stick
And Cormoran is no more.

Take care to choose consciously like a King or Queen,
Concepts and knowledge in wisdom’s control.
For the cauldron cooks not for the cowardly warrior
But the chalice will serve those who serve the creator of all.

Out of the fog come Gog and Magog,
The gate-keepers of the mound.
The phoenix emerged from grammarye’s urge
And the magic of Merlin’s gown.
Peredur vanquished madness and might
To achieve this penultimate quest
And was that night with marvellous sight
In meditation blessed.

Merry meet, merry part, may you all mingle merrily,
Many mouths may you feed with your manna and mead.
As the moon shimmers down, silver crowning the meadow-fields
Man and woman embrace the impermanence of mortality.

As you may have guessed, there’s one final quest
Against a gargantuan hog.
The bristling boar with threatening roar
Is brought down by Greid’s grey dog.
Billy goats pitch on perilous bridge
And gore the hobgoblin full sore;
His body they throw to the quagmire below
Then shave off his head to be sure!

Gird your loins, take the stage, play the game, gracefully engage.
Though the struggle be grim, truth and goodness must win.
For the greedy will fail and the underdog will prevail
For only the guileless are within grasp of the Grail.

The owl and the goose return to the shore
Of Walton Hill once more,
To wait for the running of the deer
And the light of the mid-winter’s dawn.
Embattling trees encircle Caer Sidhe
For a reckoning of the score.
Some lingering thrall for the sea’s roaring call
Heralds the end of our tour.

Let the bells ring! Now it’s time for us all to sing
One final refrain to this riddling rhyme
And the reason for this astronomical journeying
Is to wait for the hunter to rise again over the ridge.

Oh Albion! What have we done?
To our daughters and noble sons?

The Ravens

I am the white hawk of the May;
I am the son of a distant host.
Keeping the lighthouse in my sights
on the horizon, I circle lowest;
making my way from the coast.

I was with the most high
where the harmonies collide;
I have heard the perpetual song
that springs up from deep inside;

I have seen the crystal tower
and flown it round about;
I have danced with pixie folks
therein, so have no doubt;

I have studied nineteen cycles
of Gwydion’s castle turning;
I have learned, if I’ve learned anything at all,
that nothing isn’t worth the learning;

I have been known to have dreams
so strong they wake me up;
I have thought of so many reasonable schemes
that it overfills my cup;

My laugh is like a gravel path
and my work for the ministry of the patently bleedin’ daft
has become worse than a blessing in blank verse
so I’ll try to keep it terse:

With clever words and cunning hand
I contrive to harmonise the verses bland,
but I am just a placeholder for someone greater matched,
for I have much to study before I am fully hatched.

I guess it’s up to you,
dear Judges and Contenders too.
You shall sit on a chair of gold
if you would boldly bare your soul
and contend this seat with your words bewitching
to become the Bard of Ynyswitrin.

For the winter now has passed away,
we greet the growing green beneath our feet
and the silver shining moon above, grins upon thy street.
For the summer sun has vanquished
greyness, pain and thawed the sleet
and the Ravens of the battlefield still scream over meat.

More yellow is her hair than the flower of broom
and her skin it is whiter than foam;
Grander than an anenome are her hands
and swifter than hawk’s eyes her glance;
Snowier than the breast of a white swan her glands
and redder than roses her cheek;
She sucks on her fingers and wriggles her toes
and trefoils spring green up beneath her feet
and the Ravens of the battlefield still scream after their meat.

White owl of wisdom, O where have you been?
The dappled light shines on your jewellry so fine,
did you ride out to visit the Queen?
White owl of wisdom, O what have you done?
Enveloped by green, soft we fade so serene,
have you hidden the land from the sun?

For the boys they have been out fighting again.
Every year it happens, exactly the same,
for they glory in the crash of the breaking of spears,
with no sense of fear, it’s clear
that for them it’s only a game.

Well …

Frankly I’m afraid that this frequent fraternal feuding
for the feminine favours of our faerie flower maiden
is confessedly fairly futile but features fully in the
fantasy folk format that we fervently profess to follow.

Furthermore …

How shall we find the freedom to love as we choose?
Without the essence of the story loose the plot cracks
appear that it never got us nowhere near the muse
and probably only serves to confuse … quite a lot,
for the Ravens care not for the reds or for the blues.

Meanwhile …

Another supermarket goes up on the edge of town,
brownfield development more trees go down.
I’ve heard all the lines in this production,
leeches hanging on by suction,
nepotism, bribery and corruption,
and the sound of the Raven’s war cry erupts.

Shopkeepers shake their heads,
blame the junkies, blame the dreads.
Blame anyone but the real cause,
councillors twisting up the laws.
Quick! Better get an injunction!
Nepotism! Bribery! Corruption!
The Ravens of war shred the corpse with their claws.

Kids hanging out with nothing to do,
brought up on the promise of packing shoes
and renting out a room with no view. Well,
they’re all leaving town once they’ve finished school.

And the local wannabe tory wife is flaunting Foxy’s locks
and Turkey Lurkey, half alive, is banging up his lonely works.
You’d better run, run Reynard run. You’d better run for your life,
for there’s a sky full of Ravens all screaming for blood and for strife.

Three and twenty members of staff
browned their noses in the dark.
Four and twenty minus one,
who climbed right to the topmost
Silver Branch and sung out his heart
in praise of the rising sun,
and hoped that it would return
and that lighter times would come.

How can you be so small?
when the world needs you to give your all?
How can we be so small?
when the world needs us to give our all?

What happened to the socialists
who made so great a boast?
And all you new-age tories
and you hungry hippy ghosts?
For the red and blue shall fade away,
leaving only green upon the cold, wan hillside,
it may seem like waking from a dream,
but it’s going to happen, there and here,
you reckless loon, have faith not fear,
for the light will surely come.

Nightwing, nightwing,
I heard you sing till morning light.
Nightwing, nightwing,
guide us safely through the night.

Join the free discussion and share the ritual ration
while we’re waiting for the light to return
I’m calling on the Big Walkers, calling on the Standing Stoners,
waiting for the light to return.

The new moon
slithers in the sky;
blinking of an eye.

High above the trees
he sits and reads;
turning over new leaves.

Check the spiral pattern
as it cycles through the year;
Ain’t it funny how heart-drops
are shaped exactly like a tear?

Little joy; rising through the bark.
Precious boy; hiding from the dark.
Cover me with your gentle leaves,
wrap your branches round me as I breathe
around my heart and on my sleeve,
until it’s time, I do believe,
that the light has come.


Copyright 2006 Tim Hall
License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.5/