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Image result for Giotto circle

There is an apocryphal story about the artist Giotto.  The pope wanted a new artist and organised job interviews.  Giotto inscriped a perfect circle freehand and got the job.

Today is Pi Day because March 14th in the USA is annotated as 3/14 and these are the first three digits of Pi.

Pi is important because it is the number that describes a circle.  You need Pi to calculate the Radius/Diameter and the circumference of a circle.

Pi is a beautiful number because it seems to have no end.  A bit like a circle.

The eternal circle has become the symbol of a perfect marriage, as reflected in a wedding ring.

A more mystical symbol of eternity is the  ouroboros, a snake/dragon eating its own tail.  A symbol of life, death and rebirth.

Image result for ouroboros

 

 

 

 

Marriage is Creation

Louise Hourihan Hi-Res (14 of 104)

Lifestyle for sale!

We grow up hearing the Hollywood Fairy Tale which brings a relationship to the point were the hero and heroine unite at last, true love triumphs, barriers to happiness are removed, a marriage ensues and …… they all live happily ever after.

But that is not reality.  In real life the wedding ceremony is only a beginning.  People who see their “perfect day” as some kind of ending to be enshrined and treasured forever are fated to be disappointed.

Love is a temporary madness, it erupts like volcanoes and then subsides. And when it subsides, you have to make a decision. You have to work out whether your roots have so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part. Because this is what love is. Love is not breathlessness, it is not excitement, it is not the promulgation of promises of eternal passion, it is not the desire to mate every second minute of the day, it is not lying awake at night imagining that he is kissing every cranny of your body. No, don’t blush, I am telling you some truths. That is just being “in love”, which any fool can do. Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident.”                  from Captain Corelli’s Mandolin by Louis de Berniéres

This entwining of roots is an interesting metaphor.  From the day of the wedding we begin a long journey of co-creation.  We create the partnership and to a great extent we create the person that our partner becomes, and they have a heavy hand in creating the person we become.

Every day in every act and interaction we give each other tiny permissions, approvals, disapprovals, censures etc.  We validate certain behaviour patterns with our permissions and we invalidate others with our refusals.  As the years go by we settle into these patterns like the couple on the beach in Beckett’s play “Happy Days” who settle deeper and deeper into the sand of their routine.

So think about this;  If you get 40 years into a marriage and you find you can’t stand your partner just think about the fact that this is a person you created.  You are rejecting the very thing you have had a strong influence in building.  What does this say about your feelings for the person you are?

If on the other hand you are lucky enough to have a marriage that deepens in love and mutual respect then well done and give yourself a pat on the back.

The house above is our current home and we have it up for sale.  It is a home where my wife has deep roots, her Grandmother was born here.  The DNA of her extended family is woven into the very fabric of the building.  While I have had a role in creating the person Louise is today there is no doubting that this house, this land, these fields and streams had a role in creating her too.  Never have I felt more like Thomas Kinsella than in this house.

P.S. If you want to buy my lifestyle it’s for sale here:  Ballykelly

 

Another September: by Thomas Kinsella

Dreams fled away, this country bedroom, raw
with the touch of the dawn, wrapped in a minor peace,
hears through an open window the garden draw
long pitch black breaths, lay bare its apple trees,
ripe pear trees, brambles, windfall-sweetened soil,
exhale rough sweetness against the starry slates.
Nearer the river sleeps St. John’s, all toil
locked fast inside a dream with iron gates.

Domestic Autumn, like an animal
long used to handling by those countrymen,
rubs her kind hide against the bedroom wall
sensing a fragrant child come back again
– not this half-tolerated consciousness
that plants its grammar in her yielding weather
but that unspeaking daughter, growing less
familiar where we fell asleep together.

Wakeful moth wings blunder near a chair,
toss their light shell at the glass, and go
to inhabit the living starlight. Stranded hair
stirs on still linen. It is as though
the black breathing that billows her sleep, her name,
drugged under judgement, waned and – bearing daggers
and balances – down the lampless darkness they came,
moving like women : Justice, Truth, such figures.

Fresh new love

One of my guilty pleasures in having teenage children is that I get access to their English poetry syllabus.

Tonight I discovered a whole new poet lurking in the recited words of my daughter.  I shall get to know him well.  Introducing Paul Durcan!

Why should a foolish marriage vow ; by Paul Durcan

Dear Nessa – Now that our marriage is over
I would like you to know that, if I could put back the clock
Fifteen years to the cold March day of our wedding,
I would wed you again and, if that marriage also broke,
I would wed you yet again and, if it a third time broke,
Wed you again, and again, and again, and again, and again:
If you would have me which, of course, you would not.
For, even you – in spite of your patience and your innocence
(Strange characteristics in an age such as our own)
– Even you require to shake off the addiction of romantic love
And seek, instead, the herbal remedy of a sane affection
In which are mixed in profuse and fair proportion
Loverliness, brotherliness, fatherliness:
A sane man could not espouse a more faithful friend than you.

Gordian Knot

Gordian_Knot

Are you also Great?

Our lives entwined little by little
thread by thread and year by year
here a rug and there a sofa
a dog, a painting, a child
until it all became one,
a Gordian knot of strands
that thickened over time
imprinting onto each other
guiding and shaping the skeins
into a complex whole
that puzzled the greatest minds
and looked to endure till death did us part
’till you brought her in
and she cut the chariot free
with a single stroke.

D. Clancy