Thank you, Dolores O’Riordan, for your days as a kickass musician, Irishwoman, and feminist icon. You will be missed. Godspeed. ❤
Here’s a secret dream of mine: there are few things I want more from this life than to have an entire holiday dedicated to a book I wrote, although, full disclosure, I’m no closer to finishing Ulysses than I was last year.
However, I did finish Dubliners and would 10/10 recommend!!
Here’s why it’s a big deal…
Ireland is known for its literature, and Ireland is known for its history of persecution via Norman & English invaders. Therefore, when Ireland’s literature is persecuted abroad or at home, its literature becomes iconic, a voice for the oppressed.
Addendum, as to why I celebrate: I’m Irish, but I am also a huge supporter of reading banned books. It’s important not to let someone else’s idea of “right” and “wrong” taint yours, and even if the books were banned with the “best” intentions, I believe we have every right to read them. (Also, the libraries would be depleted of books very quickly should every contested novel be ousted.)
Here’s a quick history lesson…
16 June 1904 is celebrated as the 24 hour period in which Irish novelist James Joyce turned in the magnificent, bawdy and extremely dense novel Ulysses.
Ulysses has been both heralded by great authors and decried by noted reviewers alike, and was banned in the United States from 1922 until 1934 (the U.S. Espionage Act wreaked havoc on free speech during and after the First World War.)
Not to say there weren’t copies of the “obscene book” smuggled into the U.S.
Addendum: In the 2011 historical novel The Scrapbook of Frankie Pratt (set in 1920’s New England & France), two young women go to Paris to have Joyce sign their copy of the novel; an interesting fact is the author of Scrapbook is the goddaughter of Sylvia Beach, Joyce’s publisher, in real life
Here are synopses…
“Joyce’s Ulysses is a novel of eighteen “episodes,” all set in Dublin, Ireland, between 8:00 a.m. and 3:00 am, June 16-17, 1904. The three main characters are a young school teacher and aspiring writer named Stephen Dedalus (the main character of A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man), a middle-aged Jewish advertising salesman named Leopold Bloom, and Leopold’s wife, Molly Bloom. During the composition of Ulysses Joyce compiled a working outline or “schema” indicating the title of each episode (each title taken from some character or incident in Homer’s Odyssey), the approximate time and place of its setting, and, for most of the episodes, the bodily organ, the “art,” the color, the symbol, and the “technic” (or technique) significant to each episode, as well as some of the correspondences between characters in Ulysses and in Homer’sOdyssey. In the schema Joyce also divided the book into three main sections, the “Telemachia”–episodes 1-3–the “Odyssey”–episodes 4-15–and the “Nostos”–episodes 16-18. In the brief summary that follows, each entry begins with the title Joyce gave the episode in the schema (these titles do not appear in Ulysses), followed by the time; scene; bodily organ; art; color; symbol; and technic. When Joyce did not include some category for an episode a — is used.”
Longer Synopsis (Extension of Quote Above)
Longest Synopsis (That One is Likely to Read)
…And here’s how far I’ve come as of today:
IT’S A WORK IN PROGRESS!
We’ve made it.
It’s the Spring, the end of the Winter, the beginning of new life.
The darkness that begins with Halloween
with this vernal Holy week.
Today is the day Catholics (and many Protestants) celebrate the Resurrection.
(The Greek Orthodox Church celebrates Easter this year on May 1st.)
Many other faiths celebrated ceremonials this past week, and their holidays are noted below.
In Éire, it’s the centenary of the Easter Rising of 1916, which means so much to the Irish.
I can’t begin to explain it, so here is Yeats’ take.
In Sweden, the Easter witches come out, lurking the the shadows until dawn.
In the Vatican, the Pope says a magnificent Mass for everyone.
In Jerusalem, fewer Christians made a pilgrimage this year than last,
and yet the faithful will always come.
♥ ∞ ♥
This past week was also an important one for many other religions.
The Spring Equinox was last Sunday,
The 24th was also Hola Mohalla, the founding of the Sikh Khalsa.
Tomorrow, the 28th of March, is the prophet Zarathustra‘s birthday,
(Holiday research courtesy Dr. R. Sawyer. Much thanks.)
♥ ∞ ♥
My prayers are extended to those affected by the recent acts of terror in Pakistan, Belgium, Turkey, Nigeria, and the Côte d’Ivoire.
Banksy expresses hope for world peace beautifully.
p.s. – I realize that I know very little about the celebrations and customs and traditions of other faiths, and that is a shortcoming of mine. I believe in societal “wokeness”, and now I am on a mission to become religiously woke. If any mistakes have been made above, they are mine alone. “To err is human” said John Donne, but that doesn’t mean we should admit defeat; rather, we should learn and move forward. Excelsior.
p.p.s. The images of Florence Welch, in my personal belief, are introspective in a way that I identify with.
Therefore, she frequently appears in many of my posts. Her intelligence and musical artistry are really wonderful.
This is a personal blog, and no intention has been made to undermine or criticize others’ beliefs; these thoughts and expressions are purely my own.
favorites · 2015 edition
1) MOVIE:: The Secret of Roan Inish, a 1994 movie about Fiona, a girl who lives in County Donegal with her grandparents, and is searching for her brother, who was washed away to Roan Inish. (Interestingly, the movie was filmed by an American director; however its veracity was far less suspect than that of John Wayne’s A Quiet Man, which isn’t worth linking to here.)
4) SONG:: “Beautiful Day”, U2.
5) GIRL’S NAME:: Maeve, after the warrior queen. The name means “Enchantress”.
6) GIRL SAINT:: St. Dymphna!
7) BOY’S NAME:: Malachy, meaning Messenger.
8) BOY SAINT:: St. Brendan, who sailed to Brazil in the Middle Ages, (or so the legend goes).
9) POP ICON::Bono, for his social work.
10) POET:: Yeats!
12) IRISH HISTORICAL FIGURE:: Éamon de Valera (though American by birth) for his political and Irish independence activism.
13) IRISH-AMERICAN:: Caroline Kennedy
14) THE CUTEST LIFEBLOOD OF IRELAND:: Sheep!
15) MY MOST IRISH HABIT:: Crocheting (but I cannot do lace–yet!)
I wish you all a happy evening!
updated/edited: 30 May 2016
In Malachy McCourt’s A History of Ireland,
a book told in fifty-odd biographies
of great Irish personalities,
Granuaile, a sixteenth-century intellectual, pirate, and chieftain-queen
on par with her redheaded rival, Elizabeth Tudor,
Granuaile, Anglicized as Grace O’Malley,
was the daughter of the chief of the Ó Máille clan.
She spoke Gaelic, English and Latin,
was a trickster with brilliance rivaling Odysseus,
a master negotiating machine,
and once sailed to England to debate with E.T.
(The extra-terrestrial Tudor)
The Tudors, along with many of
wanted to claim the wild beauty of Ireland
and its people,
as their own.
Elizabeth the First did not know Gaelic,
and though Granuaile
took the time and effort to
the two influential redheads
conversed in a dead language,
very much alive in the
Early Modern Age.
Sadly, Granuaile’s life
is overshadowed by that of
E.T., namely because
England went on to dominate Ireland until the twentieth century.
Protestantism came to dominate the British Isles,
but the Irish people persevered,
and still are unrivaled
in their music, poetry, folklore,
tales of greats like Granuaile,
spirits, spirituality, and beauty.
(I am not biased!)
Happy Saint Pat’s Day.