Windsmithelegy

Stand still and see the salvation of the Lord.

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Links

Kevan Manwaring: www.kevanmanwaring.co.uk
Bard on a Bike blog: www.tallyessin.wordpress.com
Awen Publications: www.awenpublications.co.uk
Fire Springs: www.firesprings.org.uk
Bath Writers Workshop: www.bathwritersworkshop.co.uk
Amelia Earhart: http://www.ameliaearhart.com/
Antoine de St-Exupery: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antoine_de_Saint_Exupery
Rainer Maria Rilke: http://www.geocities.com/Paris/LeftBank/4027/
Way of Awen http://www.wayofawen.com/

Shadow-World: The World of The Windsmith Elegy

Map of Hypereurus
The Windsmith Elegy is set on Earth between 1899-1939 and Shadow World, a Secondary World consisting of four main domains, named after the Cardinal Winds: Hyper-Eurus; Hyper-Zephyrus; Hyper-Notus; and Hyper-Borea.

Philosophical/Theological ideas behind Shadow-World:

Manichaeism

The prophet Mani, founder of Manichaeism, imagined that the world was once divided between a kingdom of darkness and a kingdom of light, existing separately but adjacently, and that, as the result of darkness’s inherent aggression, these two kingdoms had become confused and jumbled, creating the world we know now, which he called “the Smudge”. He thought it was the duty of all people on the side of light to recover those atoms of their substance from the darkness and thus, in however small a way, do their bit to rescue the world. If one lived a “good” life, one was helping to do no less than protect the vastness of the world and everything in it, past, present and future; one would become, in effect, absorbed into God.

Counter Earth

The Counter-Earth is a hypothetical body of the Solar system first hypothesized by the pre-Socratic philosopher Philolaus to support his non-geocentriccosmology, in which all objects in the universe revolve around a Central Fire. The Greek word “Antichthon” means “Counter-Earth.” According to some Greek Mythology, Antichthon was placed between Earth and the center of the universe, the throne of Zeus, to stop man from looking at God directly.

Volume Four: The Burning Path

Three strangers meet in a nameless desert and must come to terms with their past before they can escape it: a First World War airman; an American aviatrix of the Thirties; and a French poet of the skies from the Second World War. They are the lost of history and must go into the desert to find themselves. To find peace they must walk the burning path. Each is forced to confront the question: What are you prepared to sacrifice for the one you love?

‘You use words so beautifully. You describe the interlacing worlds so dynamically and brilliantly.’
Moyra Caldecott.

Notes on The Burning Path and El Gouna residency

During my time as Writer-in-Residence at El Gouna I have been working on my desert-based novel, The Burning Path – part of my 5-book cross-genre series, The Windsmith Elegy, which I began in 2002. I wrote the first draft in of this, the fourth volume, in 2008 and here expanded and edited it into a second. I worked on a chapter a day (there’s 23 in total), writing an extra 20,000 words (along with 7 new poems – to date – and this blog). To live in a desert country while working on this has made all the difference – those grains of sand have become grit in the oyster. It has been an intense and sometimes challenging experience – ideal for my novel. It has enabled me to be completely in the ‘zone’, inhabiting a similar space (physical/mental/emotional) to my characters. I find this form of ‘method writing’ most effective, although it might not make me easy to be around. Finding myself staying in an artificial and often stifling cocoon (enforced socialising & unnecessary opulence; when I yearned for solitude & minimalism) I have forged a ‘desert environment’ through an experiment in estrangement – an intentional distancing of myself from those I ‘should’ connect with, to feel ‘other’, to experience the perspective of the outsider, like the boy in the story of the Emperor’s New Clothes. I strived to keep the doors of perception fully open (as William Blake declared: ‘When the doors of perception are cleansed, man will see things as they truly are, infinite,’). Antoine de St Exupery in Wind, Sand and Stars talks of stratascopos, the bird’s eye view he experienced as a pioneering pilot. Only through an intentional disjuncture was this possible (an extreme method for a land of extremes) – life at the edge of the circle, for the littoral is always a creatively fertile place, like the banks of the Nile here in Egypt: a country divided in the Red and Black Lands (as their flag symbolises) – the red is the ‘barren’ desert (which protects and offers hidden treasures); the black, the fertile soil of the Nile Valley. Life is like this – good and bad mixed together, the bitter and the sweet, light and shadow. Contrast is healthy, essential. In Italian painting its called chiaroscuro. If my time here had been absolutely perfect I wouldn’t have found the necessary edge for my writing. No pain, no gain. And so everything that has happened to me here has been just right. It has enabled me to walk the Burning Path and bring my novel alive. I have worn the mark of Cain and been cast out into the wilderness. Yet despite being in a social desert there have been occasional oases and these have kept me sane and made my stay here far more enjoyable – to all the wonderful people I have met (Egyptians, Gounies, tourists) thank you.

I set off from England with a quote from Helen Keller in the back of my mind: ‘No pessimist ever discovered the secret of the stars, or sailed to an uncharted land, or opened a new doorway for the human spirit.’

I feel my ‘optimism’ has paid off – travel allows for creative possibilities, pushes us out of our comfort zone, expand our world-view, and makes us embrace the other – and find we are brothers. As I wrote in the sample chapter I read out at the final event: The desert is the last place you expect to encounter the kindness of strangers but it is the place where you need it the most. The more isolated we become, the more hostile the environment, and the more is revealed the cosmic terror behind the frail fabric of reality, the more we need each other.

To write a book about strangers meeting in the desert in a place where … strangers meet in the desert couldn’t have been more perfect. El Gouna is a wonderful international zone where the kindness of strangers can be encountered daily:

Love ye therefore the stranger: for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt (10:19)

Email to Anthony: Anyway, it’s been a really productive time – just got to the end of the 2nd Draft of The Burning Path, and I can’t wait for people to read it. I think its my best yet – but you have to believe that, don’t you! The style is alot more stripped back. I wrote it the year my Dad died and maybe the austere aesthetic reflects that, but there’s is real beauty in the desert vistas and cultures, as I’ve discovered. Ultimately it’s an affirmation of the desert, its ecology and ethos, its abundant ‘nothingness’ – the opposite of Western consumer culture! It cries out Less is More.

Main Characters

Isambard Kerne: Edwardian antiquarian, observer of the Royal Flying Corps, accidental adventurer, windsmith. Born 1869 of Irish and Welsh ancestry. Missing in action at the Battle of Mons, August 1914.

Amelia Earhart: American 30s aviatrix, record-breaking ‘queen of the skies’; Kerne’s ‘angel’ & companion. First woman to fly solo across the Atlantic. In 1937 went missing over the Pacific on an attempt to circumnavigate the globe.

Antoine de St-Exupery: French aviator and author of The Little Prince; Wind, Sand and Stars; Southern Mail & Night Flight. Crashed crossing Egypt, attempting the Paris-Saigon record, in the Libyan desert in 1936. Saved by a group of Bedouin. In 1944 went missing on a reconnaissance flight over the Mediterranean.

Leo Africanus, aka Giovanni Leone: famous Moorish explorer and scholar from 15th Century Andulusia. Born El-hassan ben Muhammed el-Wazzan-ez-Zayyati, in Granada 1458. His family emigrated to Fes, where he studied, proving himself a gifted pupil. Became a young official and diplomat. Kidnapped by corsairs, sold to the Pope. Given his freedom. Became renowned scholar. Wrote an important early account of Africa, and a tri-lingual (Arabic/Hebrew/Italian) dictionary. The circumstances of his death are uncertain, but one theory is he disappeared attempting to return to North Africa.

Alexandrine/Alexine Tinne, aka Fraulein Tinne: 19th Century Dutchwoman explorer and early photographer. Born 1835 in The Hague, when her father died at the age of ten, she became the richest heiress in the Netherlands. First European woman to attempt to cross the Sahara. In 1869, while attempting to reach the Upper Nile in caravan, had her arm hacked off and left for dead in the Libyan desert by her Tuareg escorts.

The Blue Man – blind Tuareg holy man. Becomes the guide of Earhart and Kerne.

Characters

The Amesbury Archer
The Windsmith Elegy features a wide cast of characters, some real, some imaginary, in the spirit of Walter Savage Landor’s ‘Imaginary Conversations’.

The novels they appear in are listed in abbreviations:

The Long Woman (TLW); Windsmith (WS); The Well Under the Sea (WuS); The Burning Path (TBP); The Wounded Kingdom (TWK).

NB this list is still being developed, please be patient – more information to come on the main historical characters…

Isambard Kerne (TLW; WS; WuS; TBP; TWK): Edwardian antiquarian, observer of the Royal Flying Corps, accidental adventurer, windsmith. Born 1869 of Irish and Welsh ancestry. Missing in action at the Battle of Mons, August 1914.

Maud Kerne (TLW; TWK): wife of Isambard, a windsmith in her own right.

Archie Kerne (TLW): Isambard’s brother, Boer War veteran & would-be suitor of Maud.

Martha Kerne (TLW): Isambard’s Welsh mother.

Patrick ‘Paddy’ Kerne (WS): Isambard’s father. Navvy on the GWR.

Harry Mallard a.k.a. Mad Duck/Madoc, Speaks-with-Thunder, Taranis (TLW; WS: WuS; TBP; TWK) Kerne’s pilot, enemy and eventually, constant companion in the form of his white shadow

Alfred Watkins (TLW): early 20th Century ley pioneer, author of The Old Straight Track.

Dion Fortune (TLW): early 20th Century mystic and author on many occult books of fiction and non-fiction.

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (TLW): author of the Sherlock Holmes series & The Coming of the Fairies.

AE/George Russel (TLW): Irish mystic, author of ‘The Candle of Vision and others.

Amelia Earhart (WuS; TBP; TWK): American 30s aviatrix, record-breaking ‘queen of the skies’; Kerne’s ‘angel’ & companion. Subject of a major new movie by Mira Nair – Amelia – find out more here

Freddie Noonan (WuS): Amelia’s navigator on her last flight.

Antoine de St-Exupery (TBP): French aviator and author of The Little Prince; Wind, Sand and Stars; Southern Mail & Night Flight.

Leo Africanus (TBP): famous traveller

Tin Hinan (TBP): legendary queen of the Tuareg

Arthur Pendragon (WuS; TWK): semi-legendary Dark Age King of Britain, destined to return in the time of Britain’s greatest need.

Merlin, aka Myrddin (WS; WuS; TBP; TWK): Isambard’s unpredictable bird-ally, the great wizard of legend, turned into the eponymous falcon by ‘a woman’

Morgen (WuS; TWK): Queen of Ashalante, Arthur’s half-sister.

Barinthus (WuS; TWK): a legendary boatman said to have taken Arthur to Avalon, ‘he who knows the secrets of the seas and stars’.

Taliesin (WuS; TWK): legendary bard of Arthur’s. Also, 6th Century Welsh bard.

Aveldra, aka ‘Whirlwind’ (WuS; TWK): the former priestess of the Spiral who enchanted Merlin and trapped him in his esplumoir. Exiled from the Nine, she is bent on revenge…

Agents of Discord (WS; WuS; TBP; TWK): the sinister forces of chaos set on the destruction of Shadow World and dominion of Earth.

Eilmer (TWK): historical flying monk of Malmesbury

Gwendydd (TWK): Merlin’s sister

Contact – for press, booksellers, customers

Kevan Manwaring
Tel: 01453 765660
Email: author@windsmithelegy.com
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Glossary

The Windsmith Elegy is based largely on Celtic Mythology. There may be some terms that are unfamiliar to the lay reader and, having used my artistic license, I have interpreted them in my own way, so here’s a glossary to hopefully clear matters up! Many words are Welsh and to help, here’s a brief guide to pronunciation:

Abred: The circle of rebirth. ‘The circles or spiral of Abred: emerging life – up to the human.’ (DJ Roderic). ‘Where the dead is stronger than the living, and where every principal existence is derived from the dead, and man has traversed it.’ (IM)

Afagddu: literally ‘utter darkness’. In the Welsh legend of Taliesin, he is the ill-favoured son of the wisewoman Ceridwen, who brews a potion of wisdom for him. Unfortunately, Gwion Bach, a local boy charged with stirring the cauldron for a year and a day, receives it instead and, although he is pursued by the enraged Ceridwen, eventually he becomes twiceborn through her as ‘Taliesin’ (the shining brow). Thus, Afagddu is deprived of the potion’s benefits. Neglected by legend, ever since, he has roamed Annwn, devouring the light of others, becoming the Eater of the Dead.

Afterlands: (neologism KM) – the different realms of the ancestors within Shadow World

Andraste: Icenian Goddess of victory and revenge, Roman-British warrior queen Boudicca famously released a hare to her to prophesy the outcome of battle.

Annwn: (Welsh). Celtic land of the dead, where our world seems mirrored, albeit through a glass darkly (see Shadow World). aka The Source, the first stirrings of life, almost a primeval state of existence. ‘The outermost from God, not abyss but outer darkness.’ From the Barddas of Iolo Morganwg (IM), a questionable but fascinating reinvention of bardic lore by the eccentric 18th Century druidic revivalist.

Awen: (Welsh) bardic word for inspiration; literally ‘flowing spirit’.

Bard: (Welsh) A master storyteller, poet, musician, and remembrancer for the tribe

with a huge repertoire (350 songs or stories) and an extensive knowledge of the genealogies and landrights of the elite families. His or her mandate was to compose elegies for their noble patrons. Their satires were feared and their praise was sought. Their extensive training in British bardic colleges took 12 years.

Barrow: Bronze-age burial mound of varying shapes and sizes: bell, saucer, ring.

Bird-ally: sentient totem animal-spirits associated exclusively with one windsmith, and maintaining a telepathic link. As individual as their masters.

Bobac: small mammal of the steppe, whose flesh is prized by hunters.

BCE: Before Common Era (commonly accepted as being marked by the birth of Christ). However, BCE recognises other faiths and ideologies, and is used as an academic term of reference.

Bronze Age: the period from about 2000 to 700 BCE that usually followed the Neolithic and preceded the Iron Age, corresponding to the introduction of metallurgy, notably bronze-working, for making tools, weapons, and ceremonial objects.

CE: Common Era (aka AD). Starts with the supposed birth of Christ, Year Zero.

Caer: an Iron-Age hill-fort (Danebury). The largest hill-forts were referred to as ‘oppida’ (small townships).

Cerne Abbas: the ithyphallic chalk giant wielding a club, standing proud over the Dorset village that gives him its name. Of unknown date, although it has been associated with Herakles and Oliver Cromwell. However, Ogmios was depicted wielding a club.

Ceugant: The seat of the Godhead. The radiating sphere of the divine (DJ Roderic). ‘One falls, yet returns to the centre, the divine Ceugant.’ (IM)

Chalk Giant: a symbolic figure carved out of the turf revealing the chalk beneath, common in the chalk downlands of England.

Coelbren: A wood-based alphabet, a runic variant on the Ogham.

Cromlech: the former entrance to a neolithic burial chamber, eroded away to leave only the entrance stones, normally 3, capped with a lintel.

Cythrawl, or Cythraul. Iolo Morgannwg’s dark element of chaos and evil, said to dwell in Annwn.

Daanu: (neologism KM) river flowing from the Bone Mountains, source at waterfall below Mount Anu, the White Mother. Akin to the River Danube, whose valley cradled early Celtic civilisation.

Dark Speech: another name for the Ogham, also referred to as ‘the secret language of poets.’ Essentially a code only the Druid caste were able to interpret (like Latin to the Christian priesthood)

Druid: Celtic priest, judge and master of ceremonies; literally meaning ‘oak-priest.’

Drunemetom: the sacred meeting place of the Iron Age Galatians of Asia Minor, etymologically connected with ‘Druid’ and ‘Nemeton’ – the sacred enclosure of the Druids, or the ‘sacred oak enclosure.’

Gramarye: word-magic, literally ‘grammar’.

Grey Warrior: a Thracian armoured iron-sword wielding foot soldier of the steppe.

Gwynvyd: aka Gwynfid. The white life/place – ‘where the living is stronger than the dead, and where every principle existence is derived from the living and life, that is God, and man shall traverse it; nor will man attain to perfect knowledge, until he shall have fully traversed the circle of Gwynvyd, for no absolute knowledge can be obtained but by the experiences of the senses, from having born and suffered every condition and incident.’ (IM). This sounds akin to the Buddhist Wheel of Life, the realm of earthly existence.

Hun: predominantly warlike horse-nomad of the steppe. The most famous being the warlord Attila.

Iron Age: the period between the end of the Bronze Age (c. 700 BCE) and the spread of the Roman Empire (27 BCE-CE 68) associated predominantly with the main era of Celtic civilisation, in which iron replaced bronze for tools and weapons.

Karma-serfs: Celts who work off debts of honour and wealth in the Otherworld.

Kenning: an Anglo-Saxon concept of describing something in a poetic way to avoid using its direct name, out of respect. ie Whale-Road (sea). Possibly connected to their predilection for riddles and fondness for thinking laterally.

Kurgan: (steppe) Scythian name of burial chamber.

Long Man of Wilmington: chalk giant of West Sussex, 234 Ft high, a featureless figure wielding two staves, on barrowed Windover Hill, part of the South Downs.

Metenaidd: the four ore-tribes of the Daanu Valley, who live along tributaries rich in the metal they mine, work and trade.

Ogham: the Celtic tree alphabet, each of the 25 letters representing a native tree. 5 groups: vowels, consonants, dipthongs… Coel-bren?

Saiga: antelope species of the Eurasian steppe:

Scimitar: curved sword of the Asiatic warrior

Scythian: tribes of nomads that originated in Iran and inhabited the Eurasian steppes in the 1st millennium BCE. They were collectively referred to by the Ancient Greeks as the “Scythians”, a name that probably derives from an Iranian word skuta (archers).

Shadow World: (neologism) Otherworld connected to Earth symbiotically.

Sigil: a sign or seal. The geometric patterns Kerne sees in limbo, letters of fire which he discovers are a development of the system of ‘woodwords’ used by the windsmiths. They are effectively mnemonic symbols of words of power.

Steppe: (from the Russian step’, “lowland”) An ecosystem in temperate regions in which grasses and herbaceous plants are the dominant vegetation, commonly used to describe the treeless, undulating plains that extend from Hungary and the lower regions of the Danube basin, through Ukraine and southern Russia, into northern Kazakhstan and Siberia as far as the foothills of the Altai Mountains. Other steppe regions lie farther east in Mongolia and north-eastern China. The width of the Eurasian steppe belt varies between about 300 and 1,000 km (186 and 621 mi).

Suslik: ground squirrel indigenous to the steppe.

Tarpan: short stocky black-maned horses native of the Russian steppe and extinct since 1919.

Thracian: Warlike people of Macedonia. Although homeland of the master-bard of Greece, Orpheus, who famously entered the realm of Hades to win back his beloved.

Tuirgen – Cyclical Celtic notion of destiny, analogous to the Anglo-Saxon concept of ‘Wyrd’.

Turgen – Celtic name of a shamanic feathered cloak worn by priests.

Underworld: The realm of the ancestors and chthonic deities, akin to ‘Annwn’.

White Horse of Uffington: the stylised horse or dragon overlooking the Vale of the White Horse, 3000 years old.

Windsmith: a magician of gramarye, able to summon the wind. Each windsmith is associated with a particular caer and has a bird-ally.

Wood-priest: (neologism) another name for windsmith, effectively, a druid.

Woodword: (neologism) a kenning for an ogham name

The Windsmith Elegy: a Mythic Reality quintet from Kevan Manwaring

Kevan Manwaring is a writer, teacher and storyteller who lives in Bath, Somerset, England. Holder of an MA in the Teaching and Practice in Creative Writing from Cardiff University, he teaches creative writing part-time for the Open University. He also runs freelance courses in storytelling and various aspects of the writing process to a wide variety of students. As a professional storyteller he has appeared in numerous shows both solo and with Fire Springs, both in Britain and abroad (USA, Italy and Malta). He is the author of The Bardic Handbook, Lost Islands, the ongoing Windsmith books and his poems and articles have appeared in several magazines and anthologies. In 1998 he won the Bardic Chair of Caer Badon in his adopted city of Bath. He co-runs the Bath Writers’ Workshop. He was born on 19th August (early pioneer of flight Orville Wright’s birthday and National Aviation Day, USA) and admires windsmiths of the steel, feather and string variety. Read his blog here

The Long Woman

An antiquarian’s widow discovers her husband’s lost journals and sets out on a journeyof remembrance across 1920s England and France, retracing his steps in search of healing and independence. Along alignments of place and memory she meets mystic Dion Fortune, leyline-pioneer Alfred Watkins and a Sir Arthur Conan Doyle obsessed with the Cottingley Fairies. From Glastonbury to Carnac, she visits the ancient sites that obsessed her husband and, tested by both earthly and unearthly forces, she discovers a power within herself. The Long Woman is an exploration of the sacred landscapes of the past and the secret landscapes of the soul. Dare you walk between the worlds?

The Windsmith Elegy volume I

Funded by the Arts Council of England

Fiction, ISBN 0-9546137-5-9 RRP £9.99/$14.95

Buy from Amazon here

Now available on Kindle
Windsmith

A man of peace in a time of war, Isambard Kerne must choose between the power of words or swords. The fate of both Earth and its Shadow hangs in the balance. Will he be able to master the Way of the Windsmith in time to save the valley of his ancestors? Or will the terror of war change Kerne into what he fears the most?

‘You have captured the strong physicality of the ancient Celtic Afterlands from their myths and legends, without sacrificing any of their ‘otherness’, their spirituality. It is gripping story made even more poignant and potent for being woven out of familiar and haunting strands from ancient Irish and Welsh traditions, and familiar and haunting images from modern wars… It is a chilling concept that we affect the Afterlands by our actions in this world. It is a thought-provoking book…apart from being a thoroughly readable yarn. I love that your skill in poetry comes through in your prose. I love the quotes at the beginnings of the chapters drawing the threads of time together and weaving a rich tapestry of different, yet similar, realities. Moyra Caldecott, author ‘Guardians of the Tall Stones’ and many others

The Windsmith Elegy volume II

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Now available on Kindle
The Well Under the Sea

Imagine an island at the crossroads of time where lost souls find each other… Isambard Kerne, Edwardian antiquarian and First World War observer, missing in action at the Battle of Mons, finds himself in the Afterlands of his Celtic ancestors and has begun the Way of the Windsmith – the path he must take to find his way back home, for he is a man alive in the world of the dead. Having learnt the secrets of Eurus, god of the East Wind, Kerne must sail into the west, to Hyperzephyrus, the Land Beyond the West Wind. With the help of a mysterious boatman called Barinthus, he finally makes it to the fabled Island of the Blessed, Ashalantë, a city in the sea crafted by dreams, where the vision of Plato, Da Vinci, Brunel and others have come to life. Here he has to endure the Circle of Truth and embrace the shadow of his past. He meets Amelia Earhart, legendary American aviatrix of the Thirties, who is assigned to him as his angel to instruct him in the art of flying. As they climb higher they find themselves falling in love, but Priestesses of the Spiral are forbidden to do so. If Earhart breaks her vows, it could shatter the fellowship of the Nine Sisters, and cause the downfall of Ashalantë. Torn between duty and desire, Kerne and Earhart find themselves embroiled in a tragic chain of events that threaten to bring about the destruction of not only this otherworldly paradise, but its shadow: Earth.

The Windsmith Elegy volume III

Fiction ISBN: 978-1-906900-10-6 £9.99/$14.95

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Now available on Kindle

The Burning Path

Three strangers meet in a nameless desert and must come to terms with their past before they can escape it: a First World War airman; an American aviatrix of the Thirties; and a French poet of the skies from the Second World War. They are the lost of history and must go into the desert to find themselves. To find peace they must walk the burning path. Each is forced to confront the question: What are you prepared to sacrifice for the one you love?

**Written while Writer-in-Residence, El Gouna, Egypt, 2010**

The Windsmith Elegy Volume IV

Published 21 May @ Waterstones, Bath

Fiction, £9.99 ISBN 978-1-906900-19-9

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Now available on Kindle
To Order

Click on Amazon links above

or

Send cheque for the title payable to ‘Awen Publications’ (free P&P UK only – for other countries please contact) to:

Awen Publications, 78 Daisybank, Bisley Road, Stroud, Glos GL5 1HG

www.awenpublications.co.uk

Dedications

I lost five loved ones during the five main years of the writing of this series (2004-2009): four dear friends and my father:
Gerald Manwaring
Richard Wilde
Tim Sebastian
Simon Miles
Mary Palmer
The Windsmith Elegy is dedicated to them. May they find rest in the Afterlands.

In a wider sense, The Windsmith Elegy is in honour of all brave aviators who dedicated their lives – and often paid the ultimate sacrifice – in the name of flight and freedom.

High Flight

Oh, I have slipped the surly bonds of earth

And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;

Sunward I’ve climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth

Of sun-split clouds…and done a hundred things

You have not dreamed of…wheeled and soared and swung

High in the sunlit silence. Hov’ring there,

I’ve chased the shouting wind along, and flung

My eager craft through footless halls of air.

Up, up the long, delirious, burning blue

I’ve topped the windswept heights with easy grace

Where never lark, or even eagle flew.

And, while with silent, lifting mind I’ve trod

The high untrespassed sanctity of space

Put out my hand, and touched the face of God.

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