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Thursday, 10 March 2011

The Ring of Kerry


View from Staigue Stone Fort onto the Ring of Kerry, Ireland: photo by Christian Menz, 2002

The grandfather whistling in the chair a tune of Tralee or Killarney before
Brief sleep and dreams back into the Nineteenth Century
Biological interconnectedness over generations
A relief from being the police and from the poem not yet written
A spar to cling to at sea in the dark during wild storms off The End of Dingle

The End, Dingle Peninsula, County Kerry, Ireland
: photo by Steve Ford Elliott, 2006

Lakes of Killarney (from Ladies View), County Kerry, Ireland
: photo by Kglavin, 2005

Lakes of Killarney, County Kerry, Ireland
: photo by Kglavin, 2005

Note: "the poem not yet written": a temporary projection into the cerebrum of the Gaelic bard Uileog Ó Céirín, or Ulick Kerin (1791-1863), of County Kerry, who is supposed, in this imagination of the past, to have been an ancestor of the whistling grandfather


Lally said...

Thought you'd gotten into my head in this one Tom. My 19th Century Irish grandpa, "himself," and all.

aditya said...

The first image is absolutely absolutely great. Those clouds .. cotton zeppelins sustaining the consistency and no wetness which a vast lake and everything is so green below deny. The lack of repose and The ring of kerry speak to each other so nicely


When I traveled through Kerry I met a women named Philomena whose morning hello on the way to the showers turned into a friendly forty-five minute lecture on the recent history of the Catholic church in Ireland and why it doesn't hold sway anymore.

I used to to think the Irish were the most friendly people in the world. Though I still think them very friendly, now I realize that they are just the most talkative in the world and they have to be friendly so you'll listen to them.



"Biological interconnectedness over generations" --Johnny still asleep in his bed, poem just written. . . .


light coming into sky above still black
plane of ridge, red-tailed hawk calling
in foreground, wave sounding in channel

two almost totally flat, as
objects toward viewer

shift subject matter, shift
picture plane, “thing”

flat grey of cloud against top of ridge,
whiteness of gull flapping toward point

TC said...

Thanks, everyone. Sweet words, the next best thing to biological interconnectedness.

(If you're Irish and therefore...)

Some recent genealogical research by our daughter turned up this information concerning a possible antecedent of my maternal grandfather Thomas Kearin (whose family hailed from the Castleisland/Brosna region of County Kerry; the spelling of the name in earlier days was Kerin, without the a), in comments concerning one of the "Weaver Poets" of Brosna, in The Story of Brosna, by one Fr. Michael G. Murphy, 1930:

"Ulick Kerin -— This was a remarkable man, and his Gaelic poetry places him on a plane with Eoin Ruadh himself. His felicity of expression, biting sarcasm, command of softly flowing language, and his instinct for correct 'atmosphere' mark Ulick Kerin as a poet deserving of more renown than he has hitherto enjoyed. En passant, one may say that the Gaelic scholar, who tells his life story and collects his poems will deserve well of posterity. Here is an example of his poetry [ed. note: unfortunately the type is almost illegible, so my transcription may be inaccurate]:

"Nil aon nidh ag fas sna ngleannta, Ach blarha an ahinn Franncaig,
"Mna tighe ag gol sa cheanntar, is gan bainne acu na inn.

"(A sarcastic parody on the well-known poem called 'An Cruicin Fraoig.')"

Ulick's Gaelic name was Uileog Ó Céirín, and he lived from 1791 to 1863.

Unknown said...

I would love to hear more about Uileog Ó Céirín!

Unknown said...

I believe that your Thomas Kearin may have been the brother of my John Kearin (my great great grandfather) of Castleisland.