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Showing posts from June, 2012

Jubilee Jigs

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Apologies loyal readers (although by this stage I will be lucky if that is "reader") for my tardiness in posting recently... Things haven't eased off much since my last apology... But I've been stirred to return to my virtual sphere by the events on my doorstep today...
I've got a ticket for the big gig in Stormont today... although the fact that it is a family event and I've been given a single named ticket isn't making me that popular in the household... especially when, for various reasons (busyness, weather, back spasm) I'm reluctant to go... But given that the last time there was a jubilee visit to Northern Ireland I was one of the kids packed off to Coleraine to see the Queen, and on that occasion was one of those she spoke to on her walkabout (see photo), it would seem churlish not to go when it is so close at hand... Although due to the entrance restrictions I'm facing a significant route march to get into the Stormont Estate instead of the…

Sing from your Sick Bed

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In his reflection on Psalm 102 in his book "Songs of Experience", Roy Clements refers to the 16th century playwright  Thomas Nashe’s poem written during an outbreak of the plague. He only cites a few verses, but for full effect let me quote the whole thing: Adieu, farewell, earth’s bliss; This world uncertain is; Fond are life’s lustful joys; Death proves them all but toys; None from his darts can fly; I am sick, I must die.    Lord, have mercy on us!
Rich men, trust not in wealth, Gold cannot buy you health; Physic himself must fade. All things to end are made, The plague full swift goes by; I am sick, I must die.    Lord, have mercy on us!
Beauty is but a flower Which wrinkles will devour; Brightness falls from the air; Queens have died young and fair; Dust hath closed Helen’s eye. I am sick, I must die.    Lord, have mercy on us!
Strength stoops unto the grave, Worms feed on Hector’s brave; Swords may not fight with fate, Earth still holds ope her gate. “Come, come!” the …

Back from Conference...

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Did you miss me? Looking at the blog stats over the past few weeks, the answer to that is clearly no, but never mind... For those interested, I've been a little busy recently with a jaunt to Scotland for a family celebration, and another to Enniskillen for the Methodist Church in Ireland conference, with a couple of funerals thrown in for good measure. So I'm punctured now, and am likely to be absent from the blogsphere for a few more days as I have a bit of catch-up to do out in the real world... But first a brief comment on the conference...
Some people expressed surprise that I, and others were so positive about the past few days... I don't tend to look forward to conference... It used to be that it was a time that afforded us the chance to catch up with colleagues that we haven't seen for a year and long coffee breaks allowed important discussions to take place behind the scenes. In recent years a shortened agenda has reduced the space for those encounters, whilst…