my poem's mythology

sensing      sounding the third note of our Spring

discovering our senses, discovering our response to elements

I have used a mythology story I learned that tells of the Alder conducting the four elements of earth, air, fire and water to form an orchestrated alchemy to touch and enliven our senses.

Bards, through the ages, have shared stories of Fearn the Alder offering us the choice of living our lives by dancing with the elements or challenge their alchemy and then live with the consequences that our actions may cause.

Stories have told of how ancient men of wisdom followed ravens that guided them to where they perched upon the apex of alder trees. Some native totems are made from alder wood, and do include a carved raven on top of them.

If you have not read my Fearn the Alder story poem, please click here to indulge ...

my Fearn the Alder story poem explained ...

This story poem was originally conceived from my memory of a an early spring walk through Lough Key Forest Park in Co. Roscommon. It was a windy day and alder catkins were falling from alder branches. I was trying to catch them, with some difficulty.

This reminded me of our lessons of how most things do not turn out as we intend or wish for. To command situations and ask people to give service to our intentions is always a huge challenge. Such requests often return disturbing and upsetting consequences because our expectations from others have failed. This is one of the most intense lessons for all children to experience, and remains a lesson that we keep learning throughout our adult lives too.

My story poem relate this challenge to the mythology of the Alder.

I first speak of ravens. I notice that when ravens land on high Alder branches they often raise their wings as if they are getting ready to orchestrate the elements.

At this point I introduce the reader, or listener, to Erc The Deravid, a man featured in some of my stories. Erc is a man that I am reluctant to call, priest, druid, shaman or similar because ... well, he is who he is.

I was first inspired by Erc The Deravid through the story of Saint Brendan, one of the 12 Apostles Of Ireland who learned from the Ceili De priests. These are the priests who brought Psalms, Scribing and the Christ Heart traditions to Erin and taught them here.

Brendan is well known through the story of his sea voyage to the Americas in a leather boat that included a stop off at Hy Brasil. Brendan was ordained as a priest by an Erc The Deravid.

In this story poem, I have Erc making practical use of the Alder tree to work with each of the four elements.

It is Erc here that reminds us that we always have choice at any time to either flow with the elements or try to command them, but to accept and handle the consequences when we do choose to command them.

to read about to grow and care for your own Alder trees, please click here