Ballybay Wind Farm, Tullaroan, County Kilkenny, is home to a new wind farm owned by Renewable energy company Gaelectric.
The Location is one of the most beautiful that county Kilkenny has to offer, hidden in the hills near GrangeGrag and the Tipperary Boarder, it offers views of the lower lands towards kilkenny city and the mountain of Slievenamon, county Tipperary.
I am never sure about the impact that wind farms have on our Landscape, being a photographer and in love with my local landscapes some would assume that people like myself would be set against them. However now that this new wind farm is almost complete and having visited a few time, I find a kind of beauty and fascination with it.
The day I filmed this video the weather offered some great light, the fast moving clouds changed the areas of sun light and shade very quickly and I loved the cows grazing in the field below the wind turbines.
With this video I just wanted to share the visual effects it is having and If anyone wants, I would love to get some opinions as to what others feel ?
It was just before dusk
When he started his climb
The path grew narrow
So the dog went ahead
It grew rocky and steep
But the old man kept up
Not knowing the dog
Had slowed his pace
The old man thought back
To his very first climb
That summer evening
Of his twelfth year
All alone on the mountain
A heaven full of stars
A rock for his pillow
He talked to the moon
He asked many questions
He called his ancestors by name
The heavens answered him
With many signs and sounds
That were later explained to him
By the tribal Medicine Man
A man who came to play
A very important part in his life
He became a warrior that year
He learned much from his family
The tribal customs and traditions
Were ingrained in his soul
He was a good listener
And was comfortable with words
He was accepted by the coucil
At a very young age
He had the strength of his father
The patience of his mother
The intelligence of his grandmother
And the wisdom of his grandfather
He learned how to guide
Not only himself but others
He had become all things
To all of those around him
He was a good chief
But his days were dwindling
His mind kept going back
Over all the things he had done
No regrets, no what ifs
Knowing he did his best
But things were changing
It was the dawn of a new era
The old man reached the ledge
Where he had stood many times
Since being that boy of twelve
And he was still awed
By the beauty of the heavens
The stars seemed so close
You could reach out and touch them
And that night, he did
A Walk along the River Suir : Gallery
The most amazing thing about living close to a mountain is that almost every time your lucky enough to walk to the top the weather is different, sometimes rain, sometime fog and others times bright sunshine.
The type of weather on the mountain, I love the most is the dramatic rain and mist ….
At this time of year the sky’s and the sunlight can be an amazing sight on the landscape. views like these always remind me of the words of Isaac Newton when he said “As above so below”. he was the scientist who when working with sunlight and a prism split pure white light into its colors of (red, orange, yellow, green, blue and violet).
The words “As above so below”
Quoted here is the version by Isaac Newton from circa 1680.
. Tis true without lying, certain & most true.
. That which is below is like that which is above & that which is above is like that which is below to do the miracles of one only thing.
. And as all things have been & arose from one by the meditation of one: so all things have their birth from this one thing by adaptation.
. The Sun is its father, the moon its mother,
. The wind hath carried it in its belly, the earth its nurse.
. The father of all perfection in the whole world is here.
. Its force or power is entire if it be converted into earth.
. Separate thou the earth from the fire, the subtle from the gross sweetly with great industry.
. It ascends from the earth to the heaven & again it descends to the earth and receives the force of things superior & inferior.
. By this means you shall have the glory of the whole world & thereby all obscurity shall fly from you.
. Its force is above all force, for it vanquishes every subtle thing & penetrates every solid thing.
. So was the world created.
. From this are & do come admirable adaptations where of the means (or process) is here in this.
. Hence I am called Hermes Trismegist, having the three parts of the philosophy of the whole world.
. That which I have said of the operation of the Sun is accomplished & ended.
As above so below, Gallery
Wind Farms, Love them or hate them ?
They must be one of the most controversial additions to the modern landscape, many like them but more people dislike and protests against their construction.
Here in Ireland, over the last decade or so we have seen a massive growth in their development with our landscape increasingly covered with them !!
My personal feelings are more neutral than some, I feel it has to be remembered that Ireland has few natural energy resources and sourcing them from around the world is expensive.
There are also much more damaging methods of creating energy than these modern windmills.
The area of the hills above Kilmanagh, county kilkenny is currently having two news wind farms developed, these images below show one of them. The image at the top of this post shows the views of the area before the development started, clearly very stunning!, yet I still find the construction of these massive towers more interesting than not.
Wind farms, I guess – they are always going to be loved and hated at the same time !!!
New wind farm, county Kilkenny
I am continuing to explore the world of digital painting using a Wacom studio art tablet and truly enjoying the creative experience it can offer.
I am planning in the new year to return to real paint and brushes but at the same time I have really taken to using digital media, I will continue to use it both to produce sketch work and finished drawings and painting. The power that digital painting offers to be creative and to be attached with modern social media is hard to escape 🙂 , the next step is to explore how to print onto more traditional papers and canvas in order to present finished work in a more traditional way.
Sprinkle, squish between my toes,
The smell of ocean to my nose.
I can feel each grain of sand,
It falls from air into my hand.
The shells I find along the shore,
Picked up by birds that fly and soar.
They sparkle like the ocean’s waves,
And carry sand from all the lakes.
I walk along the tip of the sea,
That’s where my feet leave prints to be.
I walk all the way to the end of the land,
The land that holds this beautiful sand.
The Sensations of Summer
As I lay on the sand
And look up at the sky
I can see the sun shining like a diamond up high
The whooshing waves wash endlessly upon the shore
These are the sensations of summer that I adore
Nothing could replace this moment
I pick myself up
Step in to the sea
Forget all my thoughts so my mind is free
As all my troubles drift away from me
I go deeper into the rushing water, letting the waves take control
These are the sensations of summer that I adore
Amy R. Buzil
It’s a day when the ocean waves whisper to the sun:
‘Warm me up sunshine!’
And they try to throw their rays
right at me,
painting my white skin
into a golden tan.
The fingertip of the wind
brushs against my left cheek.
The clouds try hard not to move.
I see them
crawling inch by inch.
I Look down at my toes;
the hot pink nail polish;
sinks into the warm sand
the grains adjust to my movement.
I gaze out into the water
shining like cherry-flavored lip gloss
and diamonds held in a blue blanket.
I lean back into the pinkbluepurple of the wind,
where it leaves a colorful touch on my arm
and I feel as I could blow away
at any time..
Evening ghosts along the river
I could tell you how the river looks
sketched in evening light;
I know the smell of dew so fresh over the river,
and evening air that parts like tired curtains,
with wet heat that sighs
and slaps the grass when you move on;
I’ve felt what a violin says
to the heart of the river ghosts
over waters edge,
and how an old man’s voice sounds best after smoking,
but a woman’s is best talking.
There are ghosts on these paths,
but they don’t hunger anymore;
hunger is for the living
with morning light.
Gorse flowers in the Irish Landscape
Gorse is very common here in county Kilkenny but this does not make it any less loved by many, as it flowers in springtime. Many of the hills sides and woodland areas come to life with their yellow flowers.
Gorse, also known as furze, is a sweet scented, yellow flowered, spiny evergreen shrub that flowers all year round.
In fact, there are several species of gorse that flower at different times of the year making it a much-loved plant for the bees and giving it the appearance of being in bloom all year long. There is an old saying that goes, “When the gorse is out of bloom, kissing is out of season.”
Gorse is often associated with love and fertility. It was for this reason that a sprig of gorse was traditionally added to a bride’s bouquet and gorse torches were ritually burned around livestock to protect against sterility. However, one should never give gorse flowers to another as a gift for it is unlucky for both the giver and receiver.
Gorse wood was used as very effective tinder. It has a high oil content which means it burns at a similar high temperature to charcoal. The ashes of the burnt gorse were high in alkali and used to make soap when mixed with animal fat.
Onn, meaning gorse, is the 17th letter of the ogham alphabet. It equates to the English letter O.
In Celtic tradition, gorse was one of the sacred woods burned on the Beltane bonfires, probably the one that got them started. It was a shrub associated with the spring equinox and the Celtic god of light, Lugh, doubtlessly because of its ever blooming vibrant yellow flowers.
In Brittany, the Celtic summer festival of Lughnastdagh, named after the god, was known as the Festival of Golden Gorse.
Flowers used in wine and whiskey
The flowers have a distinct vanilla-coconut aroma and are edible with an almond-like taste. They can be eaten raw on salads or pickled like capers. They have also been used to make wine and to add colour and flavour to Irish whiskey. However, consuming the flowers in great numbers can cause an upset stomach due to the alkalis they contain.
The prickly nature of gorse gave it a protective reputation, specifically around livestock. As well as providing an effective hedgerow, gorse made an acceptable flea repellent and the plant was often milled to make animal fodder.
Gorse in Irish Culture
Gorse is the 15th letter of the Gaelic tree alphabet, representing O. Its old Gaelic name was Onn, and in modern Gaelic it is conasg. It’s a prickly shrub, which can almost always be found in flower somewhere, all twelve months of the year, and this means it has many positive connotations in folklore.
Snippets of lore
Here are the titbits of fact and folklore about pine tweeted by @cybercrofter on 15 December 2011.
Gorse is the 14th letter of the Gaelic tree alphabet, for O – in old Gaelic it was onn or oir (gold). In Modern Gaelic it’s conasg.
Conasg (Gaelic for gorse) means prickly or armed, appropriately enough as it’s the spiniest plant around.
As gorse’s branches, twigs and leaves are all spiny, which reduces water loss, it can survive extreme exposure to wind and salt.
Other regional names for gorse are whin or furze. In latin, it’s Ulex europaeus.
Here’s a lovely short Harry Rutherford poem about gorse. http://heracliteanfire.net/2009/01/26/poem/
Gorse bears yellow flowers all year round, and as they say, ‘When gorse is in bloom, kissing is in season.’
Gorse is a symbol of the sun god Lugh, as it carries a spark of sun all year.
Bees love gorse and it’s a good source of food for them on warm winter days and in early spring.
In late spring, gorse flowers smell of coconut and vanilla.
Here’s a poem from me, The Gorse is out behind Glencanisp. Audio too. http://www.pankmagazine.com/the-gorse-is-out-behind-glencanisp/
A decoction of gorse flowers counters jaundice.
Gorse seed pods explode in hot sun.
Gorse fixes nitrogen due to symbiosis with a bacterium in the roots.
Horses that eat gorse don’t catch colds (but presumably end up with perforated gums…)
The fierce fire of furze is ideal for baking.
Gorse boughs were used for creel-making. Ouch.
Gorse is a good windbreak and a gorse bush is the best place to dry washing – it naturally pins it in place.
A bundle of gorse is excellent for sweeping chimneys.
Here’s a recipe for gorse flower wine. http://www.celtnet.org.uk/recipes/brewing/fetch-recipe.php?rid=gorse-flower-wine
Gorse flowers give yellow and green dyes.
Gorse bark gives a dark green dye. Add a bucket of urine and wait 3 hours.
Yellowed gorse, a poem by Fay Slimm http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/yellowed-gorse/
A missing home gorse poem, by Francis Duggan http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/i-d-love-to-see-the-gorse-in-bloom/
Gorse lifts the spirits of the downhearted, and restores faith.
Festival of the Golden Gorse is celebrated on 1 August (Lughnasa).
Gorse protects against witches.
Gorse’s magic is good for bringing a piece of work, a project, a relationship or a troublesome thing to a complete and final end.
Gorse symbolises joy.
Remember the nitrogen-fixing? Grow gorse for 7 years and the ground will be excellent for corn.
In 1778 a gorse crushing mill was set up in Perth. One acre of crushed gorse bushes will keep 6 horses in fodder for 4 months.
Bring gorse into the house in May to ‘bring in the summer’.
Giving someone gorse flowers is unlucky, for both giver and receiver. Best keep them for yourself!