How Does Night Fall?

How does Night Fall

Pastoral 01

International Women’s Day 2018

I have been reflecting on Multitude of Voyce’s second service for International Women’s Day in association with St. Thomas’s Church last week. I am grateful for the trust of the Rector, Kelvin Inglis and his ministry team and also the wider support of Salisbury Diocese and Sarum College. The commitment and gifts of two local schools; St. Edmund’s Girl’s School whose pupils Lydia, Hannah & Abbie from Garrett House wrote the speech ‘Throw Like A Girl” with the generous support of Rev’d Dr. Anna Claar Thomasson Rosingh from Sarum College and Godolphin School and their superb Godolphin Vocal Ensemble who sang so beautifully showing off their award winning expertise with grace. Then there’s musicians and composers Olivia Sparkhall, Katie Salomon (Harp), Chris Guild, Delores Dufner OSB, Rachel Hewitt, Hilary Campbell, Mary Hammond, Ute Schwarting (Organ) Jean Holloway, June Nixon, Henrietta Renié, Jeanne Demessieux, Karin Högheilm all present in either voice, word or performance. Historian Alison Daniells (lovely to hear the sound of Middle English). Readers Kate Price, Helen Inglis, Ute, Louise and Mike O’Connell. Rev’d Ana Gobledale with her passionate homily and microphonic interpolations!

Louise Stewart (the green fuse that drives the flower) together with the Rev’d Wendy Cooper and myself have invested our combined grit, prayers and vision with many hours of considered thought and reaching out for the guidance of others and I continue to be amazed how our three different backgrounds, meld so fluidly. Thank you to all those wonderful people currently supporting MoV to achieve it’s vision.

I haven’t mentioned everyone but am so delighted that this brief hour and a half service was the collective effort of over fifty women and girls plus a handful of wonderful men and that it blazed the light of many talented, courageous and groundbreaking women.

On the night people who attended did so against a disturbing backdrop of international espionage and chemical hazard. People always say why do Women need #IWD ? I would say because we are still struggling for a collective voice, for control over our own bodies, for parity of pay, recognition and often, acceptance. As Louise Stewart writes “How shall our hearts be fully opened, how shall our sight be bright and clear? Faith is our candle in the darkness. Faith, love and friendship brought us here”.

Www.multitudeofvoyces.co.uk

Top image – the Rev’d Ana Gobledale lights votive candles to reflect the light of all women

Bottom image: Music Sheet

All photographs taken by Charlotte Mortimer-Talman, March 08 2018

I am the Silky Hollow…

Heavens Gate

Walk With Me 06

We’ll take the steep sunken lane that curves around the Coombe, the long wooden lane that passes the farm and cottages and stretches up towards the steel blue skyline. Let’s walk along the hollow to Elliots Shed and the Cross Dyke turning into the wide chalk byway to Win Green. The henged clump, sacred high point along this spiny ridge where ashes are scattered and flowers laid in reverence. Roll with me down the soft green and re-connect with the scoured chalk path as it loops and winds long the sleeping dragons back. The Ox Drove where man and beast communed with the universe; earth and sky meet. On either side, honeyed copse and wrinkled slope steals your breath away. Just a touch of sun required to reveal the artists handiwork. ‘Earth has not anything to show more fair, dull would he be of soul who could pass by…’ *  Here, we are cradled in the lap of the Gods, at Heaven’s Gate. We have trod the path of ancients and beneath our feet magic vibrates. ‘Here be Dragons’ spread before us the sole purpose of humanity, the eternal truth of everything.

*William Wordsworth

A New Year

A grey dawn today, rises to the orchestral swell Of wind, strings and distant percussion. There were fireworks in the village and the pub Heaved with cheers and back-slapping, full of celebration. Relieved from Crimbo limbo Morris dancers skipped down the lane In folksy eccentricity. Grizzling rain. He carries you with him from old year …

Midwinter II

Father Sun, Father Sun

When the shortest day is come

Bring me home, bring me the one.

The beating heart, the loving cup, your winters drum

Call across the hills and plains, tell everyone

Bring in the Yule log, put on your fur, your winter gown

Beneath the mistletoe with a kiss be bound

Put on your holly crown.

Sister Moon, sister moon

As the silent sea swell swoons

Step out with me in your midnight costume

We will dance to the piper’s tune

Waxing, waning through the silvered night

Fox cry, owl screech, frost bite.

Mother Earth, Mother Earth

When the new year starts to turn

As the fire scorches, burns

Rise from slumber let dreams bear fruit

Let Hope and all it’s maiden prayers take root

The oak, the ivy, together may bear

Natures winter witness to lovers everywhere.

Father Sun, Father Sun

When through the sky your journey’s done

Leave a golden ray to spark

A fire that kindles ‘gainst the dark

Send an arrow through all lost hearts

Reunite with their true path

Banish sorrow, banish gloom

Nourish Mother Earth

Replenish Sister Moon.

Three Kings journeying with winter crown

Berry red, wine and caroling throughout the towns

Three Queens riding across hills and plain

Bringing back the oak, the fruit, the harvest grain,

Snow blown winds and ice thawing in their wake

As blessings and sunrise in winter hearths they make

Red Kite calling under the morning star

Cottage, barn, farmyard, fold and cow byre

Field, hollow, high woods nestled on the hill

Welcome in the New Year, with all good will.

Father Sun, Father Sun. When the shortest day is done

Bring me home, bring me the one.

 

Midwinter Solstice       © JL Brain 2017