Flicker


Flicker, Flicker burning bright

The darkened room with all their might

As they dance around and round 

A new flame burns to break new ground 

casting their shadows upon the night.

Not worrying what’s wrong, or right.

Moving round they twist and turn,

New shapes they’re making as they burn. 

Forged among the great and good

As firelight sears it’s way through wood. 

As faces shine with wonderment 

Stolen minutes or time that’s lent.

We warm the room before our bed

To rest a while the weary head.

Days like These and Remaining Independent

 

11062706_10154122837704517_7428223558496551676_nThere’s something about days like these, being in a rural location that makes you feel cold to the bone. It’s damp in our house and in a stone cottage where on this trip we have brought with us an oil fired heater which was keeping the chill off, we were feeling rather pleased that it was working.  On a freezing cold night, we are now able to keep warm in two rooms.  I am also extremely grateful that I have the gas cooker in the caravan.  It’s a really old caravan and it leaks and is damp, but it has its’ cosy moments.

Today there is something wrong with the electric. It has been on less than half speed since we awoke there must be a problem up in the fields somewhere. The caravan fused last night, which meant that we had an impromptu candlelit dinner in there.  I was just pleased that there was power left in the house, but today nothing was running right. 20 minutes to boil a kettle and despite the heater being left on all day, the room was still cold and chilly. We wondered if any other homes were suffering but the neighbour is not around so we cannot ask him. So as I prepped dinner tonight, a Thai Chicken Curry to warm us up, suddenly the cavalry arrive here, lights ablaze on their team of vehicles, called by our neighbour who returned home to a cold house. We both have very dim lights.  At first we thought that the bulbs might be on their way out, but since they are the old incandescent ones, they either work or they don’t.

So Scottish Power arrived at about 9pm, to head over the hills to investigate a cabling problem, we were all at half speed so it seemed.

Grateful for the logs, gas bottles and candles I have in the house along with the bottled drinking water and our washing water.  Yes we are basic here, but pretty self sufficient for a night at least. The guys worked through the night, cutting all power to our homes from 11pm. Back on by 7am they let us know before heading back down the hill. We were very relieved that we could get the oil fire back on again to warm it up.

chainsaw-kit

So today we are back to normal again and since I only brought the electric chainsaw with us on this trip, I am relieved as I will have to cut wood again in a couple of days, to actually fit on the fire. Our logs were hastily cut from trees which had fallen in storms in the past couple of years, all sections are about a foot high and anything up to 2 feet across and were not logged at the time.  They have dried in large pieces and now need to be split.  We tried a small hand splitter, a large axe, a small hand axe and we only have the small chainsaw left here to try.  My partner tried it the other day, but his old injuries along with the new ones have been playing him up and have left him sore. So it will finally be my turn to try, I have the kit for working outside, chainsaw helmet, muffs, gloves, trousers and rigger boots.  I am sure that with his guidance I’ll be able to do it.  When I get the hang of using the small one, then I can move onto the big one next time.  But for now this will have to do for us.

Something occurred to me yesterday morning though, if all the big strong men up here get their logs delivered and pose with their axes for their women, then there is probably a reason or two why.  I will leave you to come to your own conclusions there.

Our neighbour has a bandsaw and a huge pile of perfectly sawn logs.  They are outside ready for winter and he has moved them outside his back door for ease of use when needed.  When the power was down, my partner commented that it must be lovely and warm in there with his new log burner going. He was a little bit shocked when he was informed that despite having it fitted over a year ago, that the man still has not yet used it. That “it was a very messy business using this one, and all the instructions are in Italian.”  As my partner says, that was three reasons.  Remembering the other neighbour with his wood delivery my response was My God, is it all for show up here?

How difficult is it to light a fire for goodness sake?

I guess some people are not blessed with either common sense or practicality.

I don’t know why the mess of a log fire should bother him, he is a wealthy man who has people to clean and pick up after him.

So when there was not enough power to pump his oil fired heating around his house rather than put on a coat to come outside and speak to the men from the power company, he stood in the icy cold in his sweater. He did not figure out how to use his log burner and would rather sit indoors moaning that it was cold.

“He’d cut off his nose to spite his face” as my grandparents used to say…

We did have some light it was so dim that it was little more than candlelight and it wouldn’t even power the fan heater, or the electric blanket on the bed. We put on extra layers, extra logs on the fire and can boil a kettle on the gas in the caravan if need be. Although everything took twice the time to achieve it didn’t much matter to us, we were not on a schedule, however for the folk who are, it must have driven them crazy.

Phoenix in the Fire

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Phoenix Fire

There is something immediately calming to me about building a log fire in our house.

I always look into the fire to see what shapes it will produce, sometimes I have seen words upon logs as they burn and sometimes there are objects which are plain to see. others you may have to look more closely for.

Here is the second night’s fire after we arrived.  I have named it my Phoenix Fire. As I placed the funny shaped log upon the fire, it began to burn and as it burned the fire curled the fronds of bark around it as though wings in flight.  It was beautiful. I did not want to leave it’s warmth.  As the fire roared from it’s mouth and all around it warming the room and my face. It was as though it had something to teach me. That underneath it all, there is still room to grow and return.  Another promise of Hope perhaps.  It would appear to be a signal that I am not done here yet.  Rising again from the embers. Stronger one can hope.

The Daily Post – Promises

Deliriously Deluded Ramblings Vol 2

Jolted awake from her sleep, by the bitter taste rising in her throat. She had no idea of it’s sudden cause. The taste acrid, it burned inside her throat. She was certain that she saw something in the darkness, laying on the edge of the mattress. It looked like a furry caterpillar, or some strange sort of plant life and she watched as it moved away and disappeared. Had she dreamt it, she searched on the floor, but it had gone. Her breath was awful, had she swallowed something in the night, an insect perhaps? It felt as though something had died in her mouth and she felt the soreness within her throat. Had the infection from her ears travelled there? The thunderclap in her ears just a week before had left her dizzy and disorientated as though her head was under water, she was not able to hear properly.

Looking at the clock she was wide awake. Three hours had passed since she had hit the sheets, exhausted and craving sleep. Was it a reaction to the stress? Acidic plasma filled her mouth, she hauled herself to the bathroom resisting the urge to be sick. Minutes later her tongue sore from scrubbing with the toothbrush as she tried in vain to rid her mouth of the bitterness she inspected her mouth for signs, the now familiar white lumps had appeared again at the back of the throat. she hoped that she would not suffer with another outbreak of ulcers to join them, but feared that it may already be too late. In recent years, they had become her body’s first deep distress signal. Her mouth swollen and sore, her lips feeling as they were on fire…
The past month has been rather dark at times. Don’t get me wrong, it is not all doom and gloom, I have had moments of Happiness thrown into the mix and clarity at times, but I have been suffering with a physical illness which really took a hold of me, causing infections, delirium and fever to ravage the body and manifest in so many ways. It has rather taken me out the way of my path to Happiness, which I had decided to journey onto and up until then I had felt that I was doing quite well.

It always catches me out on how illness can affect the brain as well as the body. I should be prepared for it by now, after years of illness with Endometriosis caused havoc upon my brain and eroded the person that I was going to be, there was so much that needed to heal. It is logical that when the mind or body is under stress, then it has to come out somewhere. But I often feel that they are seemingly unconnected it can cause your worst feelings to come up to the surface, fear, loathing, depression etc and memories you had buried from the past all racing to the fore.

Once the illness is gone, you start to rebuild what you know and try and return to your normal self. Sometimes it is easy, other times difficult, at the moment, the feeling of what I have been going through for almost a month now is still fresh and raw in my mind and I am not yet over it. I guess I am trying to rush the process, having felt that I should be much better by now, my creative juices have dried several times during this, although there have been spurts of writing, it has not exactly been the flow which I had experienced prior.

It changes you though, you feel things are never quite the same again, when you have experienced the ravages of the fever demons tormenting your mind and body and starving you of sleep when you are wracked with pain. Whatever the hell this was, I certainly don’t want it back. I will be glad when it is over and wave it goodbye. It’s a proven fact that people are getting more sick, it can‘t always be avoided I know, but it knocks you for six when it hits. I also make a mental note to stay well away from anyone who is unwell and boost my natural vitamin intake wherever possible.

Slaying the Dragon

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The proverbial dragon with fiery breath,
You’ll have to fight with until the death.
Your confidence captured it will trash,
Pray for a knight in armour to dash.
They call her the Dragon, the Witch and much more.
Collects trophies from the past, she’s keeping score.
Watching over like an evil Queen
Preying upon a weakness she’s seen.
Enemies have fallen in her wake,
Before her in their boots they’ll quake.
She’ll have her own way, or she’ll roar
Have you scrambling for the door.
With one fell swoop she’d reduce them to tears,
Been getting away with it all these years.
But just when she thinks that you’ll beat,
Away from her a hasty retreat.
Suddenly you grew so much stronger,
This couldn’t go on any longer
Dressed in your armour, you summoned your power
No longer the safety of her Ivory tower.
Scramble the walls and to battle, my dear,
To win over the dragon and conquer your fear.
Over all of the energy she would invest,
One day the dragon is laid to rest.
Trampled and broken on the floor,
Gone from your life, you’ve won the war.

A place we call Home.

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The Vistas looking out to sea,
Are where my thoughts carry me.
Birds in flight, the waves and spray,
Watching as they fly away.
Taking off for warmer climes,
Distantly a clock tower chimes.

Fox cubs fight to gain their place,
In this beautiful, cherished space.
Deer will wander breezily through,
They stop a while to admire the view.
A windswept walk on a quiet lane,
What do you see when you go again?
There’s always something to notice anew,
When there’s the dog, your thoughts and you.
Trails and flowers, animals and Bees,
Spotting something between the trees.
The wonderful sight of a hovering Hawk,
The occasional rambler stopping to talk.

Not knowing what tomorrow will bring,
Is part of the beauty in Winter or Spring.
Snow as far as the eye can see,
Peace and quiet for just us three.
Daffodils soon start to appear,
So glad that we have travelled to here.

The mottled light from Summer sun,
Just see how peaceful we become.
Alone with your thoughts up on the hill,
Haunting my dreams for the calm and still.
Sat out the front like a King on his throne,
Surveying the land in the place we call Home.

In Autumn the colours of fallen leaves,
Will truly make you think and believe
The gorgeous carpet of red, brown and green,
Is second to none as I walk through unseen.
As night time arrives the cattle are lowing,
The fire is lit and my face is glowing.
There’s smoke in the air, coffee in the pot,
My favourite chair, we have the lot.
As I watch my beloveds slumber,
I sit by the fire watching the ember.
No one can take this feeling away
Of time well spent at the end of the day.