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Tuesday 23 December 2014

John Donne: A nocturnall upon S.Lucies day, Being the shortest day; with certain Druidical factions


Sun's daily path, from summer to winter #solstice... captured with a beer-can pinhole camera!: image via Corey S. Powell @coreyspowell, 21 December 2014

Tis the yeares midnight, and it is the dayes,
Lucies, who scarce seaven houres herself unmaskes,
..The Sunne is spent, and now his flasks
..Send forth light squibs, no constant rayes;
....The worlds whole sap is sunke:
The generall balme th’ hydroptique earth hath drunk,
Whither, as to the beds-feet, life is shrunke,
Dead and enterr’d; yet all these seem to laugh,
Compar’d with mee, who am their Epitaph.

Study me then, you who shall lovers bee
At the next world, that is, at the next Spring:
..For I am every dead thing,
..In whom love wrought new Alchimie.
....For his art did expresse
A quintessence even from nothingnesse,
From dull privations, and leane emptinesse
He ruin’d mee, and I am re-begot
Of absence, darknesse, death; things which are not.

All others, from all things, draw all that’s good,
Life, soule, forme, spirit, whence they beeing have;
..I, by loves limbecke, am the grave
..Of all, that’s nothing. Oft a flood
....Have wee two wept, and so
Drownd the whole world, us two; oft did we grow
To be two Chaosses, when we did show
Care to ought else; and often absences
Withdrew our soules, and made us carcasses.

But I am by her death (which word wrongs her)
Of the first nothing, the Elixer grown;
..Were I a man, that I were one,
..I needs must know; I should preferre,
....If I were any beast,
Some ends, some means; Yea plants, yea stones detest,
And love; all, all some properties invest;
If I an ordinary nothing were,
As shadow, a light, and body must be here.

But I am None; nor will my Sunne renew.
You lovers, for whose sake, the lesser Sunne
..At this time to the Goat is runne
..To fetch new lust, and give it you,
....Enjoy your summer all;
Since shee enjoyes her long nights festivall,
Let mee prepare towards her, and let mee call
This houre her Vigill, and her Eve, since this
Both the yeares, and the dayes deep midnight is.

John Donne (1572-1631): A nocturnall upon S.Lucies day, Being the shortest day: from Poems (1633)

Low #solstice sun casts a 1000-mile long cloud shadow to north of UK: image via BBC Weather @bbcweather, 21 December 2014

As daylight advances the crowds get bigger, the drizzle gets heavier and the clouds thicker #solstice at #newgrange: image via Richard Dowling @richardowling, 21 December 2014

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The crowd beginning to gather outside the 5,000 year old passage tomb at #newgrange for the #solstice: image via Richard Dowling @richardowling, 20 December 2014

#newgrange today. Utterly astonishing place. #solstice: image via Neil Morrow @mrneilmorow, 21 December 2014

Incredible noise from the drums as we wait to be let into the monument at #Stonehenge #WinterSolstice: image via BBC South Today @BBCSouthNews, 21 December 2014

#WinterSolstice #Stonehenge Brilliant pic from the goings on at Stonehenge! Happy Solstice!: image via Adam A. Haviaras @AdamHaviaras, 21 December 2014

Big thanks to @EH_Stonehenge for allowing access int0 the #Stonehenge Monument and all the good people at sunrise...: image via All McKinlay @BadgerJellyfish, 21 December 2014 

Breakaway druidical factions. Sad to see the faith in schism after all this time (cough) #Stonehenge #WinterSolstice: image via sumit paul-choudhury @sumit, 21 December 2014

The Druid ‘king of Britain’, Arthur Uther Pendragon, conducts a service: photo by Ben Birchall/PA via the Guardian, 22 December 2014

Last week English Heritage, which manages the stones, reported a record 1.3 million people had visited the site since December 2013
: photo by Velar Grant/ZUMA Press via The Guardian, 22 December 2014

A woman meditates between standing stones at Stonehenge. If you share the beliefs of ancients pagans, this is the holiest time of the year, with the sunlight creating startling effects on Britain’s late neolithic and early bronze age monuments: photo by Ben Birchall/PA via the Guardian, 22 December 2014

Hundreds of people gather at Stonehenge in Wiltshire each year to watch the sun rise in perfect alignment with the stones: photo by Ben Birchall/PA via the Guardian, 22 December 2014

The Druidan name for the winter solstice festival is Alban Arthan, which means ‘the light of Arthur: photo by Ben Birchall/PA via the Guardian, 22 December 2014

Musicians walk around the site, pounding drums, chanting and dancing: photo by Velar Grant/ZUMA Press/Corbis via the Guardian, 22 December 2014

A caped reveller celebrates the dawn. The popularity of the winter solstice, a quieter and gentler affair than its summer counterpart, has grown in recent years: photo by Dylan Martinez/Reuters via the Guardian, 22 December 2014

#Winter solstice=shortest day of year in northern hemisphere and excuse 2 RT this from my power #walk at #Stonehenge: image via Curtis S. Chin @CurtisSChin, 21 December 2014