Tag Archives: dreams

Silver Wolf

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More on wolves: a poem written today and inspired by my love of fantasy, mythology and my spirit wolf – who is not a shape-shifter, to my knowledge – nevertheless … ?!? (fantasy wolf art from pinart collections – thank you people for providing me with a source of lovely illustrations)

silver wolf

Silver Wolf

Within the enchanted land of legend

I follow my inner dreams throughout the night

Roaming the magical landscapes of my soul

Walking side by side with my wolf of light

 

Deep inside the forest, ‘neath the trembling leaves

The Earth’s strong bones are pounding by our feet

As we dance betwix the moss-streaked stones

And weave my fantasies, like willow, to the beat

conjuring

As wolf and I howl down the moon

And sip mistletoe wine, on knotted apple grown

We awaken a sleepy dragon, shadow and fire

From its lonely wyre in olden myth and poem

 

Wolf’s strong arms entwine my waist

Holding tight, as skin on skin, we kiss and flee

Shape-shifted in this mysterious land

Of elemental force, he captures me

dragonrider

Flying swift on ancient dragon scales,

We howl our joy at Luna’s face above

Then lean into each other’s arms

To whisper sweet incantations of love

 

Our loving touch in rhythms match

The creature’s fiery wings, ablaze with hot desire

And together leave a trail of darkling stars

As we paint the midnight sky with streaks of ember fire

 

Faster than starlight the dragon bears us

Above outlandish realms, with ivory towers high

‘Cross forests dark and moorlands streaked with blood

Hastening to reach his shining castle in the sky

 whirlpool galaxy

Where we will stay awhile, safe within its walls

Rune-scribed, and draped in silk and lace

And there we’ll drown in star-filled eyes

Before we lay, and lose ourselves in loves embrace

 

Painting my skin with silent strokes

He draws me close and breaks my heart

With fervent kisses, becoming deeply one

Until I never want to be apart

 

His touch inflames and clouds my sense

As if the real world loudly, is not calling –

Drawing me, betraying all I want and need

As time flows on; my dreams are stalling

 changing

With reluctant will and fierce longing, we leave his realm

And hand in hand with burning tears, begin

To unweave the magic stones, and steal

A last sweet kiss, before my wolf is fur not skin

 

Then sunlight dawns, treacherous rays of frozen fire

That tint my dream-world bliss with golden light

Yet fill my heart with icy slivers, as for one whole day

I bid my silver wolf goodbye … until tonight

den mother

 

 

 

 

 

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On Dreams

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On Dreams

I’ve been dreaming a lot lately, more than usual … some beautiful, some magical, some unintelligible and some disturbing; and some of them, those strange dreams that leave you unbalanced and anticipating something unknown for days afterwards. I do not know why because for many years I rarely remembered my dreams, at times wondering if my brain had stopped dreaming. So, I ask myself, why this increase recently? Am I going through changes in my thinking or my lifestyle that warrants messages from my sleeping mind? Or is just a random cyclical thing? Whatever it is (and they have, at least, given rise to new poetry and ideas for stories, so they are being useful) I have been thinking deeply about dreams for a while now.

Dreams intrigue me – everyone dreams, I assume – but what are they? Where do they come from? Are they simply our mind cataloguing our computer brain files and shifting things around, or are the more significant than this, more fundamental, more vital?

I find it hard to believe that dreams are purely a systematic shifting of memory bytes. That’s almost too easy an answer for something as complex and varied as dreaming. Many are just too vivid, too diverse, and have too many images that are unlinkable to any current or past experience.

Dreams are universal functions of our mind and unite humanity across space and time; as I said – everybody dreams, and humanity has dreamt since the earliest of times. Therefore it seems reasonable to surmise that they must have some function within, and exert some influence over our existence. There must be a reason for dreaming … or maybe not. Should everything have purpose or is that a rational, day time idea? Maybe dreaming is simply another, different, level of existence. During the day we live by reason’s code in order to be safe and survive, but at night we can travel through time or soar to the stars, and do things we might otherwise never try, trapped as we often are by our insecurities and fears. During our dreams we are free to fly, dance, love and create new realities for ourselves.

There are people, of course, that can blur the boundaries of dream and daytime consciousness. I call it that rather than reality as I believe that there are many different realities. These people are the great visionary thinkers, artists, poets, writers, and especially children, who haven’t yet been polluted by society’s ideas of what is real. Such people possess imagination and the ability to express it for the potential benefit of others. They, we (for I class myself as a visionary, a writer, a poet and an artist, and I still possess a childlike mind, too childlike some would say) take our dreams into daytime consciousness daring to imagine broader horizons, new and different worlds, stranger dimensions. We fly on cosmic wings in and out of our dreams, creating and imagining and interpreting the world around us, transforming it into places of greater beauty, more magical and enchanted, remaking it in our own image.

The dream world whether captured by our night time consciousness, or flowing from our pens, keyboards and paintbrushes, is considered by many – so called intellectuals, or just plain old adults – to be unreal, fiction, imaginary. I include the last word as it illustrates the irony of the idea – imaginary ie coming from the imagination, which is purely an extension of our night time consciousness, our dreams. Yet in many parts of the world now, and in many cultures of the past, the boundaries between dreams and waking are both fragile and shifting. The Celts (a culture I identify with both emotionally and genetically) believe dreams are the realms of gods and goddesses, places to discover the very essence of existence.

And indeed, it is that dream consciousness that allows us to see beyond the mundane world to the very core of being, so that we might reach higher than our current existence towards goals and aspirations we would otherwise reject as beyond our place in the world. Dreams allow us to believe we are greater than we are and enable us to transform ourselves in new and inspiring ways.

Dreams and imagination are the central core of who we are – they have allowed human beings to rise from simple creatures of instinct to complex beings who have the ability to fly to the moon and beyond. Without dreams we are not human; they are what make us human and not just animal, for dreams and imagination transport us across the boundaries of possibility and hurl us to the ends of infinity.

A dream journey is a trip into the unknown – whether during night consciousness or through the modus of creating something from imagination. During our waking time we tend to stick to what is familiar, stay in out comfort zones. Often this is necessary in order to survive, or is the result of imprisoning fears. But in our night dreams, our day dreams, our fantasies, we can do anything, go anywhere, be anyone we choose. We can be something different every time we dream, or stretch and challenge ourselves immeasurably.

Our job as an adult is to grow and learn and develop, to expand our knowledge and skills; yet it is the child that sees and accepts, unconditionally, the vastness of the universe as accessed by imagination and dreams. Be as little children …

Today’s Western society is extremely materialistic, governed by strict concepts of reality: science. If it cannot be seen, touched, proven it cannot exist.  Dreams, spirituality, magic are all seen as fantasy. Yet the latter encompasses vision and a belief in potentiality. The latter pre-supposes that there is still much to be learnt about the present universe and our existence within it. The latter requires open-mindedness. A materialistic, realistic view is close-minded. So which is superstition and blind faith, and which is liberalism and progressiveness?  Today’s imagined dream, today’s imagined story, today’s magical idea is tomorrow’s science or medicine or invention. Is it fear of the unknown, fear of being vulnerable to possibility, fear of surrendering our imagination that insists on keeping our dreams imprisoned in a cage, and labelled unreal? Isn’t it essential to our very existence to listen to our dreams and dare to imagine a better world, a world of love, tolerance, peace and environmental purity where everyone has enough to live on, and no-one is subjugated? I’m certain that most of us dream of such a world so let’s keep dreaming, let’s keep imagining, and turn those dreams into reality on both plains of existence.

I’m conscious that I’ve not really explored what dreams are, after all, just that they are universal and essential and important – maybe their nature needs more thought from me, but in the meantime: Dream on …

Lemons & Roses

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When you meditate on a candle flame with the scent of roses and lemons drifting around you, it might be expected that it would raise issues of sadness (lemons) and hope (roses). Here is the result of such a meditation that I enjoyed (if that is the correct word considering the amount of tears it evoked) earlier in the week. When you’ve read this post take a look at the poem Soul Beacon which echoes the thoughts written here.

I’m doing a lot of meditation lately, and finding it very therapeutic – a way of putting back together my shattered and scattered soul. I quite recommend it. Anyway first is the journal images invoked by concentrating on the candle flame:lemon & rose candle

I’ve coloured it using watercolour pencils without the added water and so apologise for its faint subtlety. You will see that a variety of emotions were released both sorrowful and hopeful.

I then wrote a letter to myself in response to these identified emotions and thoughts. It is a strange piece of writing for me, written as a flow of consciousness with very little forethought and planning – simply responding to the images and words I drew in my journal. I found it odd writing objectively to myself … but the results are interesting, relevant and personally, very helpful. It was if someone else was directing the words – my higher self really does know best.

Dear Elvenstardancer                                                                                                                                                                     8th April 2014

It distressed me to read the words you wrote down on your Rose and Lemon candle page. Many of the words are indicative of Heartbreak and a fragmented Soul. You feel that you have been let down, abandoned by those who love you whether deliberately or not, and yet, despite the hurt shining so painfully from the page, I detect Hope there, too.

I know you feel abandoned, lost in the Dark, but Light pushes the darkness away. Light will always overcome the Dark, it is a matter of Universal Law. Yet the Universe is a place of Balance and without the Dark the Light cannot shine. Sometimes we need to experience the Dark in order to shine all the more brightly. You have had more than your fair share of loneliness, fear and emptiness and I know that your Heart aches with longing for a true, and deep, reciprocal Love. Be strong Sweetling, there is plenty of Love in the Universe, plenty enough for even you – yes even you! I think you know this, from the words you have written, scattered amongst the Heartache.

There are many positive words there that suggest healing is possible and maybe even begun – words such as dancing, guiding, beacon, a flame in the dark, a seed growing towards the Light. These all suggest to me that you are looking forward not backwards. They tell me that your Heart is open and ready, waiting for Love to settle there.

You tell me that you have an abundance of Love to give, which is true – hold on to that, my Sweet One, for if Love is given, Love can only be returned – to fill the vacuum that is left behind. Be that beacon you saw in the candle flame, be the guiding light in the Dark and draw Love to you for it will surely come. Love responds to the Light so let Love shine from you. Let your Dreams be known to the Universe and shine, Lady, shine in the Darkness. Send your Love out into the Void and allow your Heart and Soul to grow within your own inner Light, and that of Universe Light. Then watch Love return to you Threefold.

Be Light, Be Love, Be Laughter X x

City of Culture

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Home, I learned, can be anywhere you make it. Home is also the place to which you come back again and again.

Margaret Mead

I said my roots found it hard to get established anywhere but in fact my roots are definitely here in the north of England, and in particular, the city of Kingston Upon Hull with which I have a very love/hate relationship. I am immensely proud of Hull’s tenacity, independence (we have insulted Kings and Queens – Victoria and William of Orange sit on top of public toilets whilst Charles 1st was turned away from our gates at the start of the Civil War), history (yes, even the bad bits – slavery and whaling give us depth and colour); and famous ancestors – poets like Andrew Marvell, Phillip Larkin (remember the Toads?), politicians such as Wilberforce, actors like Maureen Lipman (I went to school with her, though she was older than me) and John Alderton, musicians such as the Housemartins/Beautiful South and Roland Gift – a whole cultural plethora of them.

I adore Hull’s buildings such as our elegant Georgian old town, the modern city heart rebuilt after war-time devastation (the most bombed city outside London and we don’t let Coventry claim otherwise, sorry) with buildings from Georgian to 50s Art Deco; refurbished dockland warehouses to innovative Malls, one built on stilts over an old dock; our graceful yet practical tidal barrier; a modern new travel interchange; refreshing green spaces in the city centre, and many parks scattered throughout with tree lined streets that radiate around this semi-circular city (causing traffic chaos at the hint of the wrong kind of snow or a broken down vehicle). All perched on the beautiful, multi-moody River Humber (not a river at all but a tidal estuary – see my poetry) with its famous suspension bridge, once the longest on earth, and strangely patterned mud flats glistening and sparkling in midday sun or midnight moonlight, respectively.

            But I get exasperated by the inhabitant’s insular approach to life, the bad decisions made by politicians that have led to massive unemployment following the decline in the fishing industry, and the continuing closure of factory after factory. Still it’s my city and I love it. I have lived and worked here all my life, brought children into the world here, contributed to supporting disadvantaged people with my charity and social work, set up support groups, got involved in fighting for different causes, enjoyed its wide variety of culture and educational opportunities. Now I enjoy semi-retirement here, spending time showing my grandchildren the city’s delights, and proudly nodding when outsiders say how down to earth and friendly we are.

We get attacked regularly from London based journalists (Channel 4’s Location, Location, Location that dubbed Hull the worst place to live – its not, without actually coming here of course) but even that pales into insignificance by one devastating attack – that of the environment itself when Hull was badly flooded in the monsoon-like rains of June 2007. Once again though, that Hull-born tenacity came to the fore as residents rose to the challenge that saw whole families reduced to living in caravans (to add to any educational disadvantages school children now had to face GCSE exams having nowhere to revise but a caravan bunk-bed). Several years on and some families are still in temporary accommodation, fighting sluggish insurance companies and grasping builders who saw an opportunity to do a bad job for good money.

More environmental disaster as the winters of 1009/10 and 2010/11 brought arctic conditions that froze pipes and struck the roads full of potholes. Yet the Hull spirit rose to the challenge with neighbours helping neighbours dig out the drives and pathways, and get the shopping in. Yet even in this northern outpost, during weather to rival Siberia, tiny signs of life pushed the cycles of the seasons ever on as snowdrop bulbs pushed through the frozen soil and mistletoe sprouted from my apple tree trunk.

But the patient city weather victims were/are still happy to relish in other successes and subsequent failures. So – good for you Hullites, with your two exceptional Rugby teams (Hull FC and Hull Kingston Rovers – we went to Wembly once (and since but not together as we did that one amazing time), the police in London feared rival gangs at such a high profile derby game but couldn’t believe their eyes to see HKR and HFC fans eating in pubs, cafes etc together, no trouble AT ALL; most of Hull went – someone hung a banner on the overhead footbridge at the western edge of the city, saying “last one out turn off the lights” – that’s our local humour); and then there’s the mixed fortune football team Tigers (more about them later) with their brand new sports stadium (doubling up as a much needed pop concert venue) sponsored by the once and only independent communications company in the country, till privatisation and market forces opened up hundreds of new telecom business opportunities, for better or worse. The unusual-in-sport HKR/HFC friendliness showed its head again recently, when the teams played together. One team just wanted to win (HFC); the other NEEDED to win (HKR) to stay in the Super League. Everyone cheered when Hull Kingston Rovers won, it meant both teams could continue to play against each other in the Super League – more derbies especially the traditional boxing day match – tradition survives. This rival friendliness, or friendly rivalry, is unheard of elsewhere I understand, but is typically Hull, and I love it.

Back to our mixed fortune football team – up and down the leagues – but suddenly finding itself in the Premier League for the first time in its history, playing the giants, and for one brief glorious shining moment, third in the league above many globally famous teams! Even the great Man U underestimated them. What other team has been to Old Trafford and LOST 4:3! It was a brief heyday as two years on – relegation, financial ruin and manager misdemeanours taint the dream – but things change – owners, managers, players and fortunes – to see us in 2013 back where we belong – the Premier division.

Hull, as a city, cannot seem to win: we are the forgotten city, with decaying factories, desperate social problems – being at the bottom of just about every league table from health to education. There is very little investment in the city, and help was exceptionally slow to arrive, for instance, during the summer floods and winter freezes, leaving families living in dreadful conditions months, nay years on. A global recession and political chaos are not helping. The government refuse to abolish the Humber Bridge debt (rising by thousands of pounds per day they say though its expensive tolls have been cut by half) in order to improve commercial networking and free trade; the council are hesitating to sell the KC stadium to a local entrepreneur which could bring prosperity and life to the very run down area surrounding the stadium.

Yet our population remain some of the most positive, resourceful, friendly, do-anything-for-you people I’ve ever met. And there are glimmers of light on the horizon with foreign companies expressing interest in making Hull the centre of green technology appropriate to our Gateway to Europe position – if the politicians are able to see the same potential that the investors seem to, and that we, the residents know is here.

Recently the Economist urged the government to abandon Hull. But thankfully it hasn’t abandoned us – for – today, at 07.45am – we were named City of Culture 2017: the best news we have had for years – and so well deserved.

I love the existing culture (some of it free yet rivalling York) though this is also under threat from government cuts (talk about a lack of joined up thinking): museums, art galleries, cinemas (popular and art-house), theatres (municipal and the World Famous Hull Truck), the award-winning Deep – Europe’s deepest submarium (deepest what? people ask), our two ground-breaking universities, our local radio (the best in the country, its official); and the traditions too: Hull Fair in October, the largest travelling fair in Europe and the last traveller stop before winter; the Sea Shanty Festival in September; the Lord Mayors Parade and Hull Show; the mighty Freedom Festival and Round the World Clipper race spectaculars, the city’s love of fireworks, our council organising some of the best displays in the country; the Christmas carol concert in our beautifully Baroque and dignified City Hall, the annual, August spectacular called National Play Day when the city centre is opened up as a playground for children; and the many, frequently multi-cultural, street festivals, parades and parties in our several and beautiful parks – and more, much more … and so much more to come! 

But my local affection goes further, I love the nearby coast of chalky, bird rich cliffs, and ever-changing nature-reserve sand dunes, and its grey, cold, unpredictable seas (once full of fishing trawlers now empty of even the fish thanks to foreign factory ships registered in countries that don’t even have a coastline); the Yorkshire Wolds, and Moors that surround us on two sides ensuring those strange local weather patterns that leave us sunny in snow storms, and experiencing droughts when everywhere else floods, till the years when Hull did indeed find itself under water (but it so desperately needed that cleansing) or frozen under arctic storms. I love the local flower sprinkled woods and dark gothic moorland forests, both within which one can glimpse, if you’re quick, a pagan green man with spreading antlers peeping out from just beyond the next tree; the ancient standing stones and vanished coastal villages – can you hear the bells tolling at high tide; the rich agricultural flood plains stretching towards an endless horizon and huge, ever-changing skies; the busy market towns nestled and nurtured amongst breast-like rolling hills; and elegant Victorian spas, dumbed down with candy-floss, bingo halls and rows of battered Vacancy signs. See my poetry page.

Returning to Chez-Lynne: I do not need anyone else in my house to make me happily fulfilled, and it  feel cosy and full of love. I revel in my solitude, which is far from lonely. I have friends and family who visit regularly. If someone special comes along one day, all well and good; if not I have my work, my writing and my creative projects to keep me busy, the garden to nurture, decorating that still needs doing, sometime, no hurry. I might kid myself into thinking I’d like to live in a villa in Tuscany complete with vines, olive trees and the local Cazanove visiting for evenings of bohemian pleasure, or on a stony mountainside in citrus-scented Cyprus, or at the Galactic Portal that is Glastonbury, or even in Middle Earth or travelling the universe in the TARDIS (yes truly, all are dreams I entertain) but will I ever be able to tear my roots from East Yorkshire, I doubt it. I’m a northern lass, through and through, born and bred. But if I do tear myself away, I know I can take my ‘home’, that idea, that concept, that feeling even, with me, like a snail, and create it again, anywhere, anytime – just another canvas!

The Green Man of the Wildwood

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Another poem based on my dreams and love of mythology: enjoy the thrill of the dark:

J 15 Wildwood She stepped through the looking glass and into the Wildwood

The Green Man of the Wild Wood

With heart torn and screaming

You flee to the woods

To escape from the nightmares

That freeze female blood

*

But trees appear friendly

When met in the day

At night senses fool you

And lead you astray

*

A shimmer of nothing

In the corner of sight

A flicker of movement

In leaves by starlight

*

The glimpse of a shadow

Across the path’s track

A shiver of coolness

Hairs raised on the back

*

The clunk of an antler

Against the tree bark

The crunch of sharp hooves

Drawing near in the dark

*

The feel of strong arms

Around shoulders held still

A shiver, a tremble

A bright tear you spill

*

A whisper of warm breath

On cheek, calms the heart

Now pierced to the core

With a hunter’s sharp dart

*

The touch of rough hands

Across skin soft and fair

A kiss, a caress

And you drown in his stare

*

Beware Hern the Hunter

Cernunnus to some,

To Woman lost and yearning

With wild love he’ll come

*

He’ll woo you with sweet words

By moonbeam made true

And bind you with promises

Come morning you’ll rue

*

Don’t step in the forest

Without thought or guide

The Green Man will find you

There’s nowhere to hide