The  FOLLY

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THE  FOLLY

 

It might well be a fancy flight
a seemly sight
to pierce the night

The ruin stands by planned design 
stately in its verdant dell
beside the lake
a tableau there 
no history to tell

Reflections guaranteed to please 
float beside its stones
imaging false contrast
in the water’s mirror
a mirage of a potent past

To build a ruin seems absurd
why would you do it
the thought occurred

Perhaps to glory in the past
show time has passed
and nought can last

But as I wander within its wall
dark and damp
and weather worn
stained in moss
and ivy clad
I feel that here
real history lies
a tale so sad
a mystery

I do recall how
in its recent age
it yet was young
was burnished bright
both stone and tiles
a comely sight

To see an abbey in its prime
no sort of crime
merely a jest with time

Fanciful, a fantasy, 
undoubtedly a fallacy
yet
reflection of a legacy
portrayal of a history

 

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Killarney

[ Photo Blog #54 ]

One of the highlights of my visit to the South West of Ireland in 2003 was a tour by horse-drawn Jaunting (or jaunty) Car of Killarney’s Muckross House and gardens and of the world famous Killarney National Park and its lakes and mountains.

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A still extant relic of the reign of Queen Victoria

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This nineteenth century Victorian mansion is set against the stunning beauty of Killarney National Park.

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The jaunty car taxi rank

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By Killarney’s Lakes and Fells

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A pause to take in the view

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The Ruins of Killegy Chapel

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In the graveyard of Killegy Chapel

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Wild flowers in the Graveyard overlooking the lake

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Tree growing inside the roofless nave of the chapel

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The roofless chapel

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Close-up view of a memorial – now open to the sky.

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Return to Mucross House

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ALL MY LOVE

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Sir Edward Coley Burne-Jones … ‘Love Among The Ruins’  1894  …   Wightwick Manor, West Midlands, National Trust, UK.

ALL MY LOVE

I cannot promise ‘All my Love’;
It’s not that I don’t care,
But love is not a hollow word;
What love I have I share.

My love for family and friends, 
That cannot be degraded;
That still will be a part of me
When other loves have faded.

There is a love of all mankind
Which brings a certitude
That life’s not just for you and me,
But nature’s plenitude.

There is a love that touches me,
A love of all creation,
Recalls for me such longing and
Sustains my inspiration.

There is a love that teaches me
To think of others first;
To curb those venial thoughts I have
My nature at its worst.

There is a love beseeches me
To face up to my errors;
To open up my damaged heart
Confront my hidden terrors.

There is a love which reaches me
Across the mighty ocean;
That gives to me a lasting hope,
A clutching at emotion.

There is a love of life itself,
A love I hold and cherish,
And pray for strength to face its end
When at last I perish.

There is love which distresses me,
Seeks more than I can give;
Demands I offer up my soul,
Smothers the life I live.

That selfish love, demanding all,
I still cannot allow;
For love’s an abstruse concept and
Mine is prescribed now.

All these are loves I’m asked to give,
Demanding that I care,
But I have only so much and
I have no love to spare.

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Sir Edward Coley Burne-Jones … ‘Love Song’  1868-1877  …  Metropolitan Museum Of Art, New York, USA.

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DISSOLUTION

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Priory Arch from, the Applegarth

DISSOLUTION

These remnants of the past adorn the present, 
Relating the aspirations of their birth,
Attaching the future to their past.

How dominant in silhouette
The ruined priory stands;
How assertive its very existence.
The faith that built its aspiring arch,
That held its hope through devotion
And a staunch religious life,

Remains in every desecrated stone,
Each weathered rock;
Still a monument to conviction,
A parable of faith.

What distinction a ruin can give,
Purpose disclosed in symmetry.
The shell recalls its torrid past, but
Hope was not destroyed along with stone.
These skeletal embers still speak of belief;
The story told in its remains,
Its hold on today still firm.

This bygone glory, the Dissolution’s ruins,
Transformed into the splendour of today;
Despair turned into hope.
This testimony from the past
Now, our treasure of the present.
Destruction brought about by time,
Ruins preserved in dignity,
Have now conveyed perspective to the present.
The toil of centuries brought to ignominious end,
Their dissolution brought about a resurrection.
In dissolution – a new life was created;
These remnants of the past adorn the present.

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Gothic Arched East Window

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Norman Arch and Medieval Dovecote

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gisbropriory2My photographs were taken on a recent visit to Gisborough Priory on the northern edge of the North Yorkshire Moors National Park.  My thoughts as presented above, although they followed from this visit and from many previous visits, apply also to the very many historic remains throughout the United Kingdom subsequent to the Dissolution of the Monasteries in the 16th Century.

Viewers of Roland’s Ragbag will note that an image of this same Priory East Window (not my own photograph) is used as header to all my blog pages.

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