Painted & Tattooed Faces

caledonian-pict

Qritani, Pritani
Cruithne, Britani
Painted Picts
Give Britannia her name.

Nemedian prince
From the dark Formorians flee,
From Éirinn to Albainn fly,
Immortal Alba’s consort,
Prydein’s uncle and king,
Seven sons; Seven kingdoms
Ruled from the mother’s line.

Six brothers and a sister,
Continental Pictones flee
From unwanted advances in Gaul
To the open arms of Eire.
One brother died before they left,
Sister died on the way,
Only brother Gub and his son
Made it to the end.
Shipped off to Alba with Irish in-laws.

Caledonian strong
Never conquered by Rome.
Angles, Saxons and Jutes
Kept on their side of Hadrian’s wall
Until “Nobles” sold them out
For titles, land and some gold.

Together with worthy neighbors:
Gaels of Dál Riata, Britons of Strathclyde,
And others, under Cináed mac Ailpín,
Scottish forever more.

2/17/17

Pronunciation key:

Qritani = Kri-ta-nee
Pritani = Pri-ta-nee
Cruithne = Crew-ith-nee
Britani = Bri-ta-nee
Éirinn = Air-in
Albainn =Al-bane
Prydein = Pri-dane
Pictones = pict-o-nees (I think)
Eire = Aire-eh
Cináed mac Ailpín = Sin-aide mic ale-pin

Note: The illustration was found on WikiMedia Commons. Description: “Pict (or Caledonian), who lived in northeastern Scotland in Late Iron Age / Early Mediaeval times. As represented in a 19th century book.” Source: William Howitt, John Cassell, John Cassell’s Illustrated History of England: From the earliest period to the reign of Edward the Fourth., Editor: John Frederick Smith, Publisher W. Kent and Co., 1857. Page 6

Once Upon A Time (Video)

I now have a video of myself reading Once Upon a Time available on my YouTube Channel.

Thoughts, Dreams and Reflections (Video)

This is the first of what I hope to be many videos I will be posting of myself reading poems and singing songs that I’ve written. For my first video I have chosen to read Thoughts, Dreams and Reflections (For Allen Ginsberg). 

The Fog is So Thick (a Tanka)

The fog sits so thick
Visibility is nil
Its claustrophobic
Never despair; things will change
Strong winds blow the fog away

2/14/17

This poem is my response to Colleen’s Weekly #Tanka #Poetry Challenge #21 – “Fog & Change”

tanka-tuesdays

Twighlight in the Níu Heimar

This poem is an addition to Níu Heimar and will appear as part of that poem if and when it is published in a book .

At twighlight,
When the Nine Worlds have fallen to dust,
All is dead; destroyed.
The surviors, rightious and good,
Shall dwell in the golden hall of Gimlé
On the south side of Ásgarðr.
Moved for safety, some say,
Southward and upward
End long through the second and
Ever upward to the wind wide blue third Heaven,
Far from fire and death,
Where, ’tis said, only the Ljósálfar still dwell.

2/13/17

Pronunciation guide:

Ljósálfar = l-juice-al-far
Ásgarðr = As-garth
ð = th in “father”

Níu Heimar

Níu Heimar, Nine homes,
Nine Worlds the Universe is made.
Through the center Yggdrasil,
The cosmic backbone grows.

At the start there was only
Muspelheim, Niflheim
And the gap in between
Muspelheim, home of world wrecker
Surtr and his Eldjötnar,
Fire giants living in volcanic furnaces
Waiting to break Bifröst to bits.

Icy Niflheim, mist-home,
World of dim darkness and fog
Surrounding Hvergelmir,
Bountiful bubbling spring
—filled by dew drops from the rack
of EikÞyrnir, Valhallan stag—
Where lives Níðhǫggr malice-striker;
From where Elivágar flows,
Feeding the rivers of the worlds.

Continue reading

Britannia

Clas Myrddin, Merlin’s Enclosure,
Ancient Elven sea fortress.
Albion, Alba’s isle,
Named for a goddess, a princess or a giant
—Or a giant divine princess—
Called Samothea after Samothes,
King of Celts,
Rich father Beli Mawr,
Husband of Danu, Mother of Irish gods.
Ynys Prydein, Isle of Britain,
Home to the Pritini,
Painted Pictish warriors,
Children of Cruithne MacIng,
Son of Fergus Lethderg,
Grandson of Nemed, High King of Éirinn
—Or a wandering tribe of continental Picts
Gifted land and women by Irish Royalty,
But definitely not a brutish patricidal
Trojan-Italian exile.

Land of Lear and Brennius burner of Rome.
Kingdom of Coel, Ambrosius and Arthur,
Home of Taliesin, Aneirin and Myrddin Wyllt,
Far beyond the north wind, adjacent to Avalon,
Doorway to the Otherworld in the West.

2/9/17

Truth (a Tanka)

Opinions vary
Our points of view are unique
Question everything
Truth can never be untrue
Alternate facts are just lies.

2/8/17

Angelic (a Tanka)

Angelic and pure
A direct current to God
Divine by nature
But don’t ever forget that
The Devil was an angel.

2/7/17

This poem is my response to Colleen’s Weekly #Tanka #Poetry Challenge #20 – “Angel & Devil”

tanka-tuesdays

Walking After Midnight

1001px-jewish_theological_seminary_of_america_logo-svg

I go walking after midnight
Stepping softly while the seminary sleeps.
Haunting Hogwarts halls alone
With the ghost of Rabbi Heschel
Standing in stocking feet.

Hank Williams echos in my head
As the quiet reverberates through
The sanctuary of the empty shul.
The silence is deafening.
No bushes are burning.
Am I hear all alone?

I came here looking for something,
For meaning, for direction,
The comfort of tradition, rituals, structure and law.
And truth.
I came here looking for truth.

2/6/17

Notes:
“Shul” is pronounced “shool” and is the Yiddish term for a Synagogue.

The image at the top of this post is the logo of the Jewish Theological Seminary in NYC and is meant to represent the burning bush that God spoke to Moses through in the book of Exodus.