Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Alliances and Betrayals: "Indians", NDNs, Irish and Irish-Americans

"There is a racist band of white Irishmen calling themselves "The Indians". They perform in face paint, fake war bonnets and similar costumes, and have misappropriated the names of honored NDN ancestors as their stage names. We have been blogging and tweeting about them, posting on their Facebook page, and reporting their page as racist."

Please, everyone I urge you to read this Facebook Note and share it on your page. We need to spread the word and show people we do NOT support people who commit cultural appropriation and blatant racism.

Wordless Wednesday, No. 5

Friday, June 24, 2011

The Carmichael Watson Project

The Carmina Gadelica is a collection of Hebridean charms, hymns, and songs that serve as a wonderful source of liturgy and traditions for us Gaelic Polytheists. The four-volume collection that was released was an edited version which cut out a lot of what Carmichael collected but thanks to a new project from Edinburgh University Library, we may learn what some of that cut information was as Carmichael's notebooks are being made available:
"The Carmichael Watson collection in Edinburgh University Library, centred on the papers of the pioneering folklorist Alexander Carmichael (1832-1912), is the foremost collection of its kind in the country, a treasure-chest of stories, songs, customs, and beliefs from the Gaelic-speaking areas of Scotland. It offers us fundamental insights into the creation of Carmichael's greatest work Carmina Gadelica, an anthology of Hebridean charms, hymns, and songs, and a key text in the 'Celtic Twilight' movement."

Monday, June 20, 2011

Grianstad an tSamhraidh 2011

"[Midsummer] is celebrated in both Isle of Man and Ireland, though in different ways. Scotland also observes Midsummer celebrations, but the customs are mostly duplicates from Bealltainn.
In Man, this is the time when the people paid the rents to Manannán from the highest hilltop. In Barrule, bundles of grass were laid down for Mannan beg mac y Lear (who often appeared as a heron, and would be there seeking out women to court). Other Manx offerings include yellow flowers.
In Ireland (specifically Munster), this is a day dedicated to Áine, and men would gather on Cnoc Áine on St John’s Eve (June 23rd) where they light torches of hay and straw tie them to poles and process round the top of the hill, then run down it, through the fields to bless the crops and cattle for the following year.

Cairn G. Photo (c) Denise Joyal

The 2011 festival year is still rather subdued for me. While I don't normally have big extravaganzas, I do make more of a do than I have been recently. I really hate to keep banging on about it (but I think I do because part of me is trying to convince the other that it's okay, sometimes people have bad years) but there's just so much going on that I'm so exhausted. For instance, right now I'm typing this from my grandmother's hospital room.*

But let's talk about the good things though shall we?

Thursday, June 9, 2011

wherein I prove I'm alive

So, it's been a while since anything of merit was posted here. To update you all: I moved back to Alabama from Tennessee in mid-February and since then have been buried deep in writing projects. I'm not talking about them right now but hopefully one should see publication by the end of the year. When I have downtime, I'm normally spending it with family, or behind the camera lens (okay, if I'm completely honest I do spend some of that downtime being a vegetable lol).

A good chunk of my time in late April was devoted to helping my community. I live in one of the town hit by the tornadoes. Half a mile from my home was almost completely wiped out and we were lucky to only be brushed by the outlying winds, but we still have some damage. We as a community are healing, and that's the good thing.

Outside of that, things have been happening, I'm just keeping a lot to myself (and within my group of close friends) but I hope to get back to posting here soon. Out of curiosity, what would you guys like to read here? Might give me some ideas for future posts :)