The Visit

Recently, I had the pleasure of welcoming one of my five brothers to Bealtaine Cottage.

Felim had visited very briefly once before, some years back, but this visit was different…something here, on this sacred little piece of Ireland, connected with him.

The energy that thrives here and the sheer joy of the living Mother Nature around him, touched his soul.

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Felim spoke little about his feelings at the time, but this week I received a poem he wrote, inspired by Bealtaine Cottage.

I have decided to share it with you, for it truly expresses an awakening deep in the heart of one who now “gets it!”

Here it is…

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BEALTAINE COTTAGE

A bruised and battered Mother Earth,

Driven to despair by the dearth

Of man’s ignorance of her needs,

Has found a nursery for her seeds

In the soil of this marshy slope.

Here she flourishes in hope-

In this arboreous pottage

Known as Bealtaine Cottage.

Three acres of managed landscape

Has reversed the ruminant rape

Of her natural rotation,

Restoring her to propagation,

Awarding her the well-earned fame

Which we once granted to her name.

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Now a nurturing Mother Earth

Displays the grandeur of her worth:

A forest of young varied trees

Offer feasting to hungry bees;

Small seeds imported from distant shores

Grow to saplings, their hopeful spores

Pollinated, sowing new birth

Within the womb of Mother Earth.

Their young branches shiver and shake

As birds alight, eager to make

Their own claim to the budding feast-

A bounty that will never cease.

At dawn each day, this feathered throng

Praise the earth with angel-song.

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And what about the Water Sprite,

Her sluggish flow a sorry plight?

Her new dug channels’ sparkling flow

Take her to the ponds below,

To spread her silt and rest awhile

Then disappear beneath the stile.

The ponds replace a former bog

And now play host to speckled frog,

While safe beneath the pond-weeds’ root

Swims a little crested newt.

A passing heron stops for tea,

(The food here, after all, is free.)

And willows of all shapes abound

They thrive on such well-watered ground.

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At Bealtaine there is a wealth

Of Mother Earth restored to health.

She shows her true vitality

All over this locality.

She integrates her plants and trees

With cuckoos, wrens and bumble bees;

While Water Sprite, once so random,

Now flows along with her in tandem:

And all because a loving hand

Was laid upon this stretch of land;

A hand with skill to recognise

That Mother Earth is strong and wise;

And if allowed, she will restore

Her bounty to our slopes once more.

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“Bealtaine Cottage” by Felim O’Neill.

Composed on the evening of my return from two days at Bealtaine Cottage.

As the Bees Die…Our Role in Heaven or Hell

Bees at Bealtaine CottageKeeping Bees and making honey turned into Keeping Bees and making money…on a vast commercial scale, with hundreds of hives being transported all over the world, to ensure pollination of vast stretches of monoculture crops.

Roses at Bealtaine CottageThere is an Orwellian feel to this scenario.

Something feels so very wrong about this.

Alarm bells should have been triggered at this point, about 20 years ago…monoculture madness would end up consuming all that is sacred about our Earth.

Redcurrants at Bealtaine CottageTrusting our food security to corporations and governments has led us all to the edge of the abyss.

This is particularly highlighted with the recent, disgraceful episode of horse-meat found in the Beef supply chain all across Europe.

Wren in a basket at Bealtaine Cottage 012

(Can you see the little Wren in the hanging basket?)

The incessant greed for higher profits and the complicity of government departments in this money-making racket resonates with previous scandals.

Barn at Bealtaine Cottage Permaculture Gardens

We had regulators in place for the banking system…scandal!

Hen House at Bealtaine Cottage Permaculture Gardens

We had regulators in place for the church…scandal!

Herbs in tyres at Bealtaine Cottage

We had regulations in place for politicians…scandal!

Celtic Cross at Bealtaine Cottage

Yet, all the time, the people we should have trusted, we ignored…ourselves!

Euphorbia in the front garden

We CAN do something to help ameliorate this disaster happening before our very eyes.

seedlings in pots in the permaculture gardens

There are a few simple steps we can take, starting this very weekend, the first weekend in March!

Valerian at Bealtaine Cottage May 2012 011The first is fun…sow flower seeds, flowers for the bees.

Columbine at Bealtaine Cottage Everyone can do this and be aware that as you make your environment a more beautiful place, so too, the world becomes a happier place for the bees.

Strawberries at Bealtaine CottageThe other action you can take, starting immediately, is to buy locally produced, seasonal, fresh food, not of the monoculture produced variety!

Look at it this way…Every cent or penny you spend is an investment in the world you want to see.

Home made Blackcurrant Chutney permaculture cottage 001

Local food is quality food with no air miles or massive profit included!

Bog Garden at Bealtaine Cottage

Be the change you want to see…

Podcasts will be linked from the new Podcast page listed at the top of the website…go there for the daily podcast or just to catch up.

Bealtaine Cottage YouTube Channel…is free from adverts, with over 100 videos from the gardens of Bealtaine Cottage  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCHkXJ9wsrdPEpzb-KMgmt-ASeeds and Willow  https://bealtainecottage.com/seeds-for-sale/  All open-pollinated seeds of flowers, vegetables and trees growing under Permaculture for 11 years.

Bealtaine Cottage Podcast  https://soundcloud.com/bealtaine-cottage  A daily podcast from Bealtaine Cottage, Ireland.

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Bealtaine Cottage Website  https://bealtainecottage.com/  is free and has over 850 blogs, as well as over 3,500 photographs. A massive and comprehensive Permaculture resource.

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The Wren at Bealtaine…Biodiversity in Permaculture, Naturally!

Can you see the little bird nesting in the corner of the hanging basket? I think it’s a Wren and it has made a nest here in the shelter of the veranda.

I waited util it had flown and quickly snapped some pics…and was really surprised to see these tiny eggs in the nest!

Looks like there’s five eggs…I didn’t want to hang about snapping pics as I guessed Mother Wren was eyeing me up from nearby!

She’s in the fifth basket along from the left, on the inward side of the basket, so very sheltered and safe!