Going With the Flow

I wrote about Mahon Falls up in the Comeragh Mountains here in Co. Waterford a little while back and the River Mahon has been on my mind ever since.

Here is the river gushing down at Mahon Falls;

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Mahon Falls, Co. Waterford

and in this next photograph you can see the river (on the left of the winding path) making its way down towards the sea.

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View from Mahon Falls

The River Mahon rises up in the mountains and eventually enters the sea at Bonmahon which is on the Copper Coast. I was drawn to Bonmahon today to capture the river as it enters the sea.

Just before it turns its last corner, it serves as a place where a few boats are usually moored ~ boats that always catch my eye with their colours and reflections:

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Reflections

Down by the point where the river meets the sea, a beer bottle in a crevice in the rocks was glinting merrily. I couldn’t imagine that it had been put there by human hand and wanted to think that there might be a message in it:

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And, here’s a glimpse of the how the ocean and the River Mahon greet each other in Bonmahon:

Long Evenings in Co. Waterford

There’s something about stolen long evenings in Co. Waterford that wraps me up in sweet tranquillity.

Last Saturday, I felt the need to feast my eyes after too much screenery and found myself chasing the last of the light out along the Copper Coast. It was a dullish evening but I knew that there would be beauty if I let it find me.

Bonmahon Beach was deserted save for one young man making his way into the sea for one last swim:

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Depths

The Yeatsian sky ~ ‘Had I the heaven’s embroidered cloths…’ mirrored on the sand like a painting laid out to dry:

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‘Enrought with golden and silver light …’

Bonmahon, like so many other cities, towns and villages across Europe, was engrossed in the EURO 2016 quarter final game between Italy and Germany and I met just one walker when I stopped to savour the setting sun. We said our ‘hellos’ and and agreed that it was a great evening to be out:

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Homeward Bound

The bleating of sheep rang through the salt air and I thought of those days in Spring when I was out searching for the first lambs of the year:

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Togetherness

It was very heaven to see the curtains of the day closing over the Comeragh Mountains:

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Closure

Back home the screen was flickering and tensions were high as the penalty shoot-out saw the Italian dream fade and German joy rise.

No one noticed that I’d not been there for the whole match and that’s how I wanted it to be!

 

When Buildings Speak ~ Gatherings from Ireland # 323

Ever since I was a kid, I’ve had a mad curiosity about old churches and schools. Mother and I used to go on cycling expeditions and more often than not I would cajole her into giving me a leg up to peer in the windows of some ancient building that had a large ‘NO TRESPASSING’ sign at the gate.

I vividly remember the first time I actually entered the church in Bonmahon here in Co. Waterford. I was absolutely blown away by its lovely wooden beams and what felt like a depth of history.

Bonmahon Church, Co. Waterford
Bonmahon Church, Co. Waterford

Just last week, I drove up there again to see if I could get in to savour that beauty. There was a little plaque on the wall that left me reeling as it unfolded the history of the building in what was a key copper mining village in the nineteenth century:

The fact that this  building has served so many different functions took me totally by surprise and I can’t stop wondering about the thousands of lives it must have touched, in a host of different ways,  in its various incarnations.

The Interior of Bonmahon Church today
The Interior of Bonmahon Church today

I’m now looking at all sorts of buildings and wishing I could hear their stories!

Words, Writings and Welcomes ~ Gatherings from Ireland # 186

The Art Hand, Bonmahon, Co. Waterford
Photo: Sean Corcoran

I’ve been hearing about the wonders of writers’ groups for years  but somehow never got round to taking the plunge in a face-to-face setting.  Online groups kinda hooked me!

Everything changed last Wednesday night when I went to the inaugural meeting of  WORDS Writers Group performing @theArtHand.

The venue, The Art Hand, an art school run by Sean and Miranda Corcoran right on the stunning Copper Coast here in Co. Waterford was enough to hook me as I jump at every excuse to drive along this indescribably beautiful part of Ireland’s coastline.

The whole idea behind WORDS Writers’ Group, which was the brainchild of  Tom Power, Roisin Hackett and Sean Corcoran, is that words are what bring writers of all genres together and that sharing words (either our own work or that of others)  through performance, is a hugely inspirational and profound interpersonal experience.

WORDS founders x
Tom Power, Roisin Hackett and Sean Corcoran
Photo: Sean Corcoran

Thirty people had reserved places for the event and they were all strangers to me. It was a brilliant mix of men, women and children; people from the local area and those from much further afield who were drawn to the event ~ all with a love of words!

The sharing of  poems, stories, anecdotes, even a reading from a book by Robert Louis Stevenson about his time writing Treasure Island,  generated a surge of energy and camaraderie in the cosy room and transported me to all sorts of places of the mind, heart and world of imagination.

One of the ‘performers’ that really impressed me was  Sean Ruane, a poet, who just happened to be in the area and whose work can be heard on this link:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_gb39fe0eDI

I’ve absolutely no idea what other writers’ groups are like and would love if you would tell me. But, for now, I’m already looking forward to the first Wednesday of August and the next gathering of  WORDS Writers Group and working on a few ideas for what I’ll write to share.