Category Archives: I Wonder

Do you agree?

Itching to write! But something’s stopping me. I’ve worked too long and hard on other stuff (other writing projects, paintings, promoting my work, providing therapy, networking). My brain is saying ‘Stop! Take a break’ and another part is saying ‘Get on with it, you’re not going to survive if you sit still!’.

When it comes to creativity, timing is everything. You create the right space by taking care of yourself. Do you agree?

I’m just writing out loud here in an effort to clear the decks. The thing I love most about writing is the connection it allows me to have with the wider world. That connection is a very special thing. We share so much even though we may be oceans apart. Do you agree?

I am always going to assume from now on that you may be the person who does not agree so fire ahead and rant and rave, just on this post, leave the others alone hahaha! Selective ranting and raving. Do you agree?

So its Friday, I have not co-ordinated a plan yet but I am going to unwind ever so slowly. A break is indeed necessary. It’s Bank Holiday here in Ireland (meaning most people get an extra day off work just because).

August is for me, like an end of year thing, because I am actually a student and have been for many years. September to July are the months of my studies which have transformed me to what you see today. Not like that ‘wan’ years ago, who would hide under a bed so that the world would not see her in anyway good.

Elton Caroline

Now, is a time for reflection. So much has happened in this last 11 months. My sphere has broadened, I’m on the up in lots of ways. I still need more sales to bring more dignity to my efforts but if you are serious about helping in that area I provide excellent value in all my art works and books and its very easy to use my on-line shop.  Do you agree?

I look forward to keeping you posted on the next big news stuff for my creative works.

Have fun everyone. Thank you for stopping by! Do you agree?

© Caroline Cunningham

Support my creative endeavours – books – artwork – therapy

The Whisperings of Nature – Book

Seven Cs to Calm – Book

Preparing for Calm (Free eBook)

The Sacred Lives of Trees – Artwork

Even more affordable artwork options – Art Prints

Advertisements

Wuthering Wind

We marry the rough and tumble

You and I,

We drift in the babbling wind of a sultry sky,

Distant door chimes softly ringing,

Cohesive synergetic hymning,

Games and ladders

Slides and swings,

Nodding, bobbing, to shore we swim.

Every heart beat, every pulsing rhythm,

Mine, yours and every them,

Parting, joining, shrugging, flinging,

For now and always we are living,

Pulsing, darting, shredding, hearting,

Together, never far removed,

Makes me think ‘so what is freedom’?

When clasped we are by the wuthering wind!

©Copyright Caroline Cunningham 2017

Caroline Cunningham is the Author of The Whisperings of Nature – a collection of 15 Nature-inspired poems offering comfort, wisdom and inspiration – Go Shopping!

Note: Wuthering Wind is not included in The Whisperings of Nature poetry collection.

What are your thoughts on ‘Wuthering Wind’? How does the sound of wind make you feel?

 

Writing letters all of their days – Travel Tale

Up until then they were just two older men meeting for dinner. Then they ordered desert!

I was tempted, as one of the deserts looked particularly elaborate. I had to ask them what it was. That was the start of our conversation.

Beneath the canapé of the restaurant with candle lights dancing in table top lanterns, the waiter presented me with the delicious Hungarian delight. The gentlemen saluted me as I dipped my spoon into the chocolate dreamy folds of cake.

 

2010_0710FirstFugi0468

Budapest

 

Now we were in unison, enjoying treats and absorbing the magic of lapsing twilight into deeper night time sky. I settled back in my seat for a moment, observing the city passersby and raised my eyes to the roof tops of stately buildings. I had found rest after my hours of walking and deciphering of maps and streets, this moment felt like my reward.

‘Is it your first time to Budapest?’ He addressed me in English but German was his first language. His friend smiled at me. ‘Yes,’ I replied. ‘And you travel alone?’ he enquired. ‘I’m going to a wedding in a Slovakia in a few days,’ I added. They both seemed very pleased with this response and as we had now moved to coffees they saluted me again.

2010_0710FirstFugi0462

The Danube

Our tables were close enough for comfortable communication although, I had to pay close attention because the other gentleman spoke with a French accent and his English was not as coherent as that of his German friend.

2010_0710FirstFugi0517

Budapest

They enquired about my homeland of Ireland, saying that they had visited some years ago and had enjoyed the beautiful landscape. Ireland had been in the news a lot that week, as the American President had paid a stately visit. The German man being, more chatty, made a reference to our famous USA visitor. I told him my tale of how I had seen Barak Obama twice in one day, as his car drove past and he had waved at me both times!

And I couldn’t stop myself from telling the story about his ‘stately tank of a car’ getting stuck in the hollow of the Embassy gates in Dublin and how they had to get a crane to lift it out. As we erupted into laughter, so too did the diners at the next tables. They were American!

Car Budapest

Budapest – Wild Star Landing

I decided it was time to find out more about my new friends. Their story touched my heart. Here we had two men in their seventies who had maintained a friendship since they were schoolboys. One grew up in Germany and the other in France. And how their friendship grew? They were pen-pals!

It was explained to me that this was an initiative instigated between schools after World War 2 with the intention of establishing good relations between future generations of the two countries. What a genius idea! As young boys they had shared their stories with each other, letter by letter, each building a sense of what life was like for the other. I imagined how it must have been so exciting receiving those letters and how their imaginations must have been set alight.

 

2010_0710FirstFugi0033

Budapest – Wild Star Landing

 

There was thoughtfulness between them as they recounted their story in turns. They both had families of their own now, all grown up and there were grandchildren too. Throughout all the other events of life they had maintained this special bond.

In later years, they decided that every year they would meet in a European city and spend a few days together, which is how I found myself sitting next to them on this very night. Such a story warranted an additional salute. We continued our conversations while enjoying a nightcap of red wine.

Car Budapest

Budapest – Wild Star Landing

They wanted to know about my friends who were to be married and my plans for getting to Slovakia. I thanked them for sharing their story which was so inspiring.

People seldom write letters anymore. My mother writes them to her friends in sympathy when they have lost someone close. I recalled how, as back-packers in Australia in the 90’s, fellow travellers sometimes sent each other letters to say ‘I made it home’ or ‘it was lovely to meet you’, even if the meeting was just for one day. This was before things like email and mobile phones were all the rage. I still have a stash of those letters saved, promising myself I’ll read them when I’m 80 or if I ever get incapacitated.

It was time to say goodnight. We paid our bills and walked together to the train station. We embraced, kissing each other from side to side, then waved goodbye.

And that was my first night in Budapest.

car-budapest-3.jpg

Budapest – Wild Star Landing

This article is dedicated to a group of twitter pals of mine who instigated a chat around the topic of letter writing. I remembered this story and a few of our group made me promise to share it once I added the story to my blog. I hope you enjoyed the tale.

Do leave a comment to let me know if you still write letters or have some stashed away too. Or maybe you had a special trip to Budapest too?

© Caroline Cunningham

Coffee on Chatham Row

A warm sunny day in Ireland is by now a rare and excitable event. On one of these rare days I took to the streets and headed straight to town to mingle with the masses of giddy Irish rooted folk. All my business attended to by noon I settled in a sunny spot outside the Metro on Chatham Row which is becoming a favourite haunt of mine for coffee and their famous Tuscan Bean Soup!!

I squeezed into a vacant chair and faced outwards at the busy street with passers-by, vans and cars grooving along and the sun beaming down on me with the right amount of shading from the overhead canopy.

The coffee tasted delicious. I don’t take sugar anymore but I do absorb the flavours of the sights and sounds that accompany my sipping. Large men sipping tiny cups of coffee conjured amusing images of Gulliver and his travels, while beardy Irish blokes tried their best to nonchalantly discuss the latest art venture that they’d been seconded to.  A quiet sort just randomly checking his crossword eventually decided he had cracked it and moved along. The talk from table to table invariably drifted to ‘Spain’, sure I am going there myself next week! ‘Chico!’ ‘Omar Shariff & Lanzarote!’ Yes these vibes go well with coffee in the rare Dublin Irish sunshine.

Cars and vans rolled slowly by awaiting their turn to take the nearby corner. A friendly beep signalled my neighbour to turn and exchange cheeky grins of familiarity with the driver who is probably also thinking of Spain.

‘When we are on the beach, remind me that I have something to tell you,’ one of my favourite Aunts had said on the phone when booking our flights a few nights ago. ‘Can you repeat that line once more?’ I asked her as the reality began to sink in. ‘When we are on the beach………..aahh! Good coffee!

What Do I Really Know?

Really! What do I know?

I have read that blood vessels dilate when the body and mind are relaxed and this has a beneficial effect for the individual in general. Some books even say that in this relaxed state the body heals itself and energy flows freely. But really? I have only read these things in books or they have been repeated to me by others who believed. Some other person did all the work and search in coming to this understanding. Or maybe the information arrived in their intuition so strongly that they just knew it to be true. I am only repeating the logic and information I have read and heard.

So, do I really know what is true? I only know that yes, when I relax and release my mind of unnecessary thoughts, then yes, I am more inclined to feel good. I feel freer. I get more ideas. I become spontaneous. I am more inclined to act on my ideas once I decide that they are good. But it has taken time to understand this. I have read lots and lots of books. I have listened to heaps of ideas and theories. I have not watched blood vessels dilate. I have not seen energy fields expand. But somehow I know things to be true. I have an understanding of how life works or does not work. And the more I hear and read and observe, the more I understand.

So, what do I really know? Perhaps I do know something, even if I cannot see it with my own two eyes.
I remain open to understanding and always asking, ‘what do I really know?’

© Caroline Cunningham 2013

Gentle Men

GENTLE MEN

It wasn’t a particularly long queue, but judging by the meanderings of the ladies ahead of me it could take a while before I would be smelling coffee with my friends, who already had been served. 

I resumed a patient manner and gazed beyond the ladies as they distracted over lemon slices and rocky roads. 

It was then I caught his eye. A kindly gentleman stood calmly waiting for his order to be prepared.  I smiled and he winked in acknowledgement.  

At last the ladies made their choices and payments and it was my turn. ‘Cappuccino please,’ said I. The kindly gentleman received his order just then. Two fine glasses of lattes complete with saucers and spoons. It looked tricky. ‘Would you like a tray?’ I asked him, seeing he had none. ‘That would be lovely,’ he replied. I fetched the tray and as he prepared to leave the counter he turned to me. ‘You are an angel, a real one,’ he said to me. ‘I don’t know about that,’ I replied a little surprised by the extent of his gratitude. ‘Oh, yes, you are!’ he confirmed, ‘you just don’t know it.’ 

There was something very comforting about the way he said it. As I reached the table where my friends were sitting, I looked across and saw the gentleman with his pals. ‘This is how angels recognise each other,’ I thought, as I considered the warm exchange.

Coffee was good and needed as it was a particularly wet day. Standing in the bus queue later, laden with bags, did not seem so unfortunate having been infused with coffee and the company of angels. 

The bus was packed on arrival but there was standing room for many more. I piled on with my bags of study books and art utensils finding a not so comfortable standing spot squeezed between other bodies. 

One stop later a seat became available towards the rear of the bus. I counted to five and since the other standing passengers made no move I set my sights on claiming it. 

An elderly gentleman was sitting there at the window. He was dressed quite elegantly with a hat and overcoat. Just as I approached he leaned sideways a little. ‘Do you want to get out?’ I asked him. ‘No, I was waiting for you,’ he replied a little twinkle-eyed and with kindly smile. ‘Well, it worked out well for both of us so,’ I replied with amusement.  

The fact that he did not proceed with further conversation added to the affection of his remark. I was aware of his silent company and I noticed how his left hand had a little shake, a reminder of the conditions that people sometimes have to live with. He appeared to be at peace with his condition and this too was in some way comforting to me.

My stop approached and as I gathered my belongings he turned to say goodbye, I returned the gesture and bid him a good day. 

I made my way towards the front of the bus and as I stood amongst the passengers waiting to disembark, I noticed something very different this time round. 

The bus glided slowly and gently to the stop. There was no need to brace or hang on tightly to the rails. As the doors opened, I made my way towards the steps saying ‘thank you’ to the driver as many passengers in Ireland do. I halted and turning to the bus driver I remarked, ‘you’re a very good driver!’ He looked surprised but uttered, ‘Thanks!’ and added, ‘ I appreciate that.’

I considered the gentility of men as I reached my home, thinking of how powerful and special the effects can be. Here’s to the gentility of men and thank you for extending your gentility to me.

©Caroline Cunningham 15th March 2013