Gobnait’s Well (or not so)

By: deborahsc

Nov 25 2007

Tags: , ,

Category: Photography, Poetry

1 Comment


A day fourteen centuries ago shortly before the sun appears
full and steady in Ballyvourney, Gobnait passes the well
eager for the buzz of market day, the trading of gossip

like any commodity, the adornments of detail will
be added to humble stories of humbler lives, beads
of sweat from an uncommonly warm day

setting off complaints in a litany
even the abbey priest would find tiring
the weather, the wares, the worries

There is no agreement of woes, except the bees:
Who will save us? Moses, the great Patrick who sent serpents
to the sea? We cannot find our way from misery.

A lot they expect from their petitions, Gobnait sighs
as she cools herself under the tree the bears her name,
they had better want what they pray for.

And they received the relief for which heaven had been stormed
but without the bees, earth turned the brown of powder,
bushes had thorns, but no blooms.

‘Tis these miracles that burden us so; this land could do
with fewer kinds, poets and saints.”
With some fear
holy Gobnait takes her leave to the beehive huts
further west and down the coast to Dunquinn.

Still they call that well in Cork Tobar Ghobnait
and for every traveler who passes this way
the story gets told as it is remembered.

One comment on “Gobnait’s Well (or not so)”

  1. Deborah, let me congratulate you on this fine work. I am entranced with the photography and the words that accompany it. You are combining both art forms – poetry and image-making – into another art genre. I cannot wait to see your final project. Best of Luck to you along the journey. Do keep me informed as to the date of the Cherry Blossom event. I will be there cheering you on!

    All the best,
    Julie Maloney, Director

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