inspiration (II)

22. A quote, poem or piece of writing that reminds you of this deity

I heard this poem recited on the radio a few days ago. It made me reflect on some of my recent official and unofficial forays into churchgoing, as a pagan druid (about which, more later, in another post)…


If I were called in
to construct a religion
I should make use of water.

Going to church
Would entail a fording
To dry, different clothes;

My liturgy would employ
Images of sousing,
A furious devout drench,

And I should raise in the east
A glass of water
Where any-angled light
Could congregate endlessly.

[From Philip Larkin’s The Whitsun Weddings, Faber & Faber Ltd, 1964].

Larkin writes from within a cultural traditional of Anglicanism, and modern British agnosticism. I feel comfortable reading ‘going to church’ as any act of worship, including pagan ritual. What matters in this poem is the impulse to experience and connect with a sense of what is sacred, however we define it. And, in this poem, his evocation of the wonder of water and light is what makes me think of Manawydan.


inspiration (I)

20. Art that reminds you of this deity

My favourite representation of Manawydan (in the guise of Manannán) was created by the ever-inspirational Thalia Took as part of her God Art project. I have shared it on this blog before, but it’s worth sharing again:


John Sutton’s Limavady sculpture of Manannán Mac Lír is worth a mention here, too. It really captured the spirit of the god who sang out to Bran mac Febal that, to him, the sea is a flowery plain that he traverses in his wave-sweeping chariot. It was vandalised early in 2015, the figure of Manannán  replaced with a crude wooden cross. I can’t wait to see it restored:


Closer to home, Amanda Oliphant, a Wirral-based artist, paints ‘reflective landscapes’ of the places I haunt on my walks. These, too, capture something of the wonder that forms part of my relationship with my deity:

estuary island

Estuary Island