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Terri Windling
Dartmoor, in England's West Country
Writer, artist, book editor, folklorist.
Interests: myth and mythic arts
Recent Activity
I want to be in the company of owls, Jane. Your poem reminds me of "Skeins o Geese" by Scottish writer Kathleen Jamie (whose gorgeous essays & poems I've only just discovered, thanks to a bookstore on Skye): Skeins o geese write a word across the sky. A word struck lik a gong afore I wis born. The sky moves like cattle, lowin. I'm as empty as stane, as fields ploo'd but not sown, naked as blin as a stane. Blin tae the word, blin tae a' soon but geese ca'ing. Wire twists lik archaic script roon a gate. The barbs sign tae the wind as though it was deef. The word whustles ower high for ma senses. Awa. No lik the past which lies strewn aroun. Nor sudden death. No lik a lover we'll ken an connect wi forever. The hem of its goin drags across the sky. Whit dae birds write on the dusk? A word niver spoken or read. The skeins turn hame, on the wind's dumb moan, a soun, maybe human, bereft. --- The poem is from Jamie's third collection, The Queen of Sheba (Bloodaxe Books, 1994); all rights reserved by the author. There's a lovely discussion of the poem by Ruth Padel here: http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/the-sunday-poem-no-23-kathleen-jamie-1093967.html
Toggle Commented 2 days ago on Weather and words at Myth & Moor
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They're coming!
Toggle Commented 2 days ago on True names at Myth & Moor
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I often wonder if more modern heath problems than we realize (and I include my own here) are rooted in environmental distress -- not just in the obvious way of the body reacting to exposure to toxins, but also in mythic and metaphoric ways: the places where the human story, and our personal stories, shape our response to the world around us. Certainly many traditional ways of healing focused on these stories as much as on the physical symptoms of an illness or imbalance.
Toggle Commented 2 days ago on True names at Myth & Moor
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A pleasure, Dona.
Toggle Commented 2 days ago on Out of the studio at Myth & Moor
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"...but I also think it is important to recognize kindness when it is gifted to us by others and everyday by nature." I completely agree. I love your desert poem, Wendy; and of course, it makes me miss the desert fiercely this morning.
Toggle Commented 2 days ago on Out of the studio at Myth & Moor
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After last week's discussion of Gaelic place-names, we must surely start the week some Gaelic songs.... In the documentary series Port, Scottish singer Julie Fowlis teamed up with Irish singer Muireann NicAmhlaoibh to investigate Gaelic music and culture in its... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Myth & Moor
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Sorry, everyone, I got caught up in other commitments and wasn't able to post earlier today. I'll be back in the studio, and back to Myth & Moor, on Monday morning. In the meantime, let me leave you with George... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Myth & Moor
Have you written much about your family, Stuart? That's something I'd love to read.
Toggle Commented 5 days ago on The mnemonics of words at Myth & Moor
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"But having said all of that I still think that beauty is integral in and of itself and doesn't need language of any sort to allow its existence or appreciation." I certainly don't disagree with that.
Toggle Commented 5 days ago on True names at Myth & Moor
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Oh my. You get right to the heart of the matter; and that last verse packs a punch.
Toggle Commented 5 days ago on True names at Myth & Moor
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You're making perfect and eloquent sense to me, Charlotte.
Toggle Commented 5 days ago on True names at Myth & Moor
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I love creating my own names for places! But what I personally like about also learning the older names, lore, and history of the places I live or roam is the way it connects me to past generations...and, if I pass them on, to generations of the future. This is precisely why I write fiction steeped in myth and folklore, to be part of that generations-long chain. Three of my favorite quotes: "For most of human history, 'literature,' both fiction and poetry, has been narrated, not written - heard, not read. So fairy tales, folk tales, stories from the oral tradition, are all of them the most vital connection we have with the imaginations of the ordinary men and women whose labor created our world." - Angela Carter "There were always tales passed from mother to daughter, father to son. Down through the generations they came, so that we would never forget that place, that magic, that elemental and awesome power that abided in our forbears. In each generation the power of the tales rests with us, the storytellers." - Evangeline Walton "I think every work of art is an act of faith, or we wouldn't bother to do it. It is a message in a bottle, a shout in the dark. It's saying, 'I'm here and I believe that you are somewhere and that you will answer if necessary across time, not necessarily in my lifetime." -Jeanette Winterson
Toggle Commented 5 days ago on True names at Myth & Moor
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Delighted! I think you'd like his book "The Old Ways" too.
Toggle Commented 5 days ago on True names at Myth & Moor
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Hmm, I don't read the text above as stating that you can't love a place without knowing it's true name. Of course you can. In my reading of it, Robert is talking about the ways our culture has becoming disengaged with the land compared to past generations -- and how the loss of words that hold the history of our relationship with a place, built up over many generations, adds to that cultural disengagement. This isn't about each of us as individuals (with our wide range of relationships to landscape), but a broader argument about modern culture in large (not all) swathes of the West. As a writer, and particularly as a mythic fiction writer, I believe in the power of words, so this is an idea that chimes with me. Thank you for bringing Le Guin's "Always Coming Home" into the conversation. I'd forgotten about the very interesting way she uses language in that book. And I love the fact that you've intuited your own way into having a medicine relationship with the land and plants. That is a gift.
Toggle Commented 5 days ago on True names at Myth & Moor
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Beautifully expressed, Christina.
Toggle Commented 5 days ago on True names at Myth & Moor
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I agree, Ann.
Toggle Commented 5 days ago on True names at Myth & Moor
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Glad that you're all enjoying the music and art as much as I did!
Toggle Commented 6 days ago on Tunes for a Monday Morning at Myth & Moor
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A pleasure.
Toggle Commented 6 days ago on Weather and words at Myth & Moor
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Stuart, have you read "We Borrow the Earth" by Patrick Jasper Lee? I don't know what people make of it in Romani circles, but I found it fascinating.
Toggle Commented 6 days ago on The mnemonics of words at Myth & Moor
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I don't know how much Devon lore and history gets taught to children here in Chagford. There's still so much local history and lore I don't know myself, though I seek it out...and more gets lost with the passing of each generation. It seems to me so vital to preserve these things -- not as quaint relics of the past, but as living history connecting each generation to the next, connecting us to the past and future. I'm so glad you're doing that with the children you teach, Charlotte.
Toggle Commented 6 days ago on The mnemonics of words at Myth & Moor
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I love that line too. So true!
Toggle Commented 6 days ago on Weather and words at Myth & Moor
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I agree with Jane. Orion seems the perfect place for it. EarthLines would have been as well. Such a pity they've stopped publishing. I really want to see your poems go out into the world....
Toggle Commented 6 days ago on Weather and words at Myth & Moor
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Roger Deakin's work is very precious to me too.
Toggle Commented 6 days ago on Weather and words at Myth & Moor
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I love this one so much it has gone right to the place of honor on my studio door. Thank you, dear.
Toggle Commented 6 days ago on Weather and words at Myth & Moor
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I recommend Robert's book, Stuart. Get his argument in full, rather than my short excerpt here, and give him a shot a convincing you. He certainly convinced me.
Toggle Commented 6 days ago on True names at Myth & Moor
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