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Spooks, spectres and the supernatural

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janscribe
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Re: Spooks, spectres and the supernatural « Reply #105 on: May 14, 2010, 07:20 PM »
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Many years ago I read The Stand an epic Stephen King about a world where much of the population had been killed off by a virus. Well I never,  Gulbis has just broken Fed who served a double fault. First set and its 2-0 to Gulbis.
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Aileen
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Re: Spooks, spectres and the supernatural « Reply #106 on: May 14, 2010, 08:58 PM »
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... Well I never,  Gulbis has just broken Fed who served a double fault. First set and its 2-0 to Gulbis.
Oooooh - really spooky that!! Very Happy
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janscribe
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Re: Spooks, spectres and the supernatural « Reply #107 on: May 17, 2010, 08:32 AM »
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This particular legend is quite possibly a true ancient Saxon tale. Many researches by the learned folk have verified its authenticity.


THE LEGEND OF CHILDE THE HUNTER

The winter's sun rose milky pale to light the Saxon morn
Glancing through the whisps of mist which draped the valley's dawn.
Sounds touched the silent hilltop and pierced the eerie glow
As men and horses mingled in the Manor Court below.

Keen hooves pawed the cobbles, breath smote the frosty air
As nobles, huntsmen, comrades hastened to prepare
To ride the distant hills of Plym, revelling in the chase
For game, for deer and antlered stags who roamed the moorland waste.
Away they cantered, climbing high through forest, stream and fen
Past sacred granite circles and the graves of ancient men.

An antlered stag moved o’er the ridge; young Childe sped away,
Leaving comrades far behind as he pursued his prey;
He heeded not the waning sun nor yet the darkening skies
Intent upon the fleeing stag, its horns a hunters’ prize.
In fading light the first soft flakes fell swift to brush his face
Whipped by an icy, strengthening wind, the hunter slowed his pace.

In vain he sought a path across the deep and quaking mire
To seek the humble shelter of a distant homestead’s fire.
Turning back the signs which marked the way he had to go
Were covered by a blanket of ever-deepening snow.

No refuge found the hunter from the blizzard’s raging force,
Desperate now, he took his knife and killed his faithful horse.
Crawling deep within the hide, scant shelter found he there,
With ebbing strength, in biting cold, for death he must prepare.
Drawing blood he wrote these words upon a granite stone,
A will, a final testament, to those who bore him home.   

‘To those who bring my bones to rest
My lands at Plymstock I bequest’
                                                                                             
From Tavistock the friars came to claim him with a prayer
And buried him at Tavistock within the Abbey there.

Curlews call across the mire still treacherous and deep
The rocks upon the hilltop their age-old secrets keep.
The ancient granite cross still stands upon the hillside bare
Its legend through the centuries, a fireside tale to share.
The wind still sweeps the moorgrass and roams the fenland wide
And whistles by the lonely place where Childe the Hunter died.

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Re: Spooks, spectres and the supernatural « Reply #108 on: May 17, 2010, 08:44 AM »
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Beautifully written ....
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Aileen
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Re: Spooks, spectres and the supernatural « Reply #109 on: May 17, 2010, 09:08 AM »
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Absolutely brilliant poem which conveys so much atmosphere.  I could just feel the chill and the despair before Childe's death, brought about by his own folly.

Can we have some more, please, Jan?
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Re: Spooks, spectres and the supernatural « Reply #110 on: May 17, 2010, 04:48 PM »
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Absolutely brilliant poem which conveys so much atmosphere.  I could just feel the chill and the despair before Childe's death, brought about by his own folly.

Can we have some more, please, Jan?
I know there are at least 2 more but do you think I can find them on the hard drive? I'll have another look soon. I know there weren't too many because I was too busy writing articles to spend time with the poetry - they take such a long time to perfect but I think Childe the Hunter was perhaps my favourite.
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Re: Spooks, spectres and the supernatural « Reply #111 on: May 17, 2010, 05:23 PM »
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This poem was the first thing of mine that Devon Life published and Os and I continued to write stuff for them for the next 8-10 years. It concerns Princetown Church which stands close to Dartmoor Prison which was built to house French Prisoners of war but also housed those American prisoners captured around about the War of 1812 - what was that war all about I hear you ask - not too sure of its origins but it followed the American War of Independence and had something to with shipping and trade. I also wrote this piece which will explain the Church's own legend.
ST MICHAEL AND ALL ANGELS, PRINCETOWN

Surrounded by glorious moorland and overlooking the stark walls of Dartmoor Prison, stands the Church of St Michael and All Angels, Princetown , serenely awaiting a decision regarding its future.

In 1810 Napoleonic prisoners-of-war were put to work to cut granite from a nearby quarry and build a Church to serve the needs of the growing community which had sprung up around Sir Thomas Tyrwhitt's War Prison at Princetown.  In 1813 they were joined by American prisoners-of-war who completed the building and furnished the interior, the first service being held on 2nd January 1814.

Over the years support has come from the descendants of these American prisoners, the 'Daughters of 1812', including provision of the beautiful East Window, which is dedicated to the 218 American soldiers who died here and who are buried in the tiny American Cemetery behind the Prison.  

Following the opening of the Prison for convict use in 1850 this Church, beautiful in its simplicity, continued to serve the spiritual needs of the villagers and many convicts were interred in the graveyard, a small square stone with just their initials and year of death marking each grave.  In 1994 St Michaels was closed for worship and offered for sale.  Its future seemed in doubt until a Christian organisation came forward with a proposal to convert the Church for use as a Centre for Theological and Ecological studies.  This venture, still in its planning stage, could secure the future of this historic building, although the churchyard will always remain a memorial to the Dartmoor folk who lived and died here and to the convicts who ended their lives within the grim walls of the nearby prison.

A Dartmoor Church

A Moorland church tower stands supreme against a darkening sky -
What tales its crumbling granite walls might tell of days gone by!
No English craftsmen used their skills to lovingly prepare
This place of peace and worship for their countrymen to share.
From America and France they came, as prisoners-of-war.
From prison hulk on Plymouth Hoe to the Prison on the Moor.
Here country folk had bult their homes and tilled the stony ground
Where purple flowering heather and granite rocks abound.

So came these men to Princetown - to Dartmoor's mist and rain.
Put to work they built the church and loathed their captors' chain.
How many times, bereft of hope, their weary eyes would roam
Across these lovely hills of Dart, and long for hills of home.
Racked with disease, hungry and cold, they worked and hundreds died;
Buried there in Princetown - their own home soil denied.
But they are not forgotten by their kin across the sea
And they'll be forever written in England's history.
Within the Church the Stars and Stripes, the French Tricolour too
Stand proudly by the Union Jack in honour of these few
And symbolise those later days, when war became world-wide
When American, French and British men fought bravely - side by side.
And so they lie near Dartmoor folk in glorious moorland there;
A graveyard in paradise, historical and rare.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Snow covers with its mantel, with silent mists endowed;
Dark winter's grip is tightened 'neath an amil's icy shroud.
Blanketed with Autumn leaves and soaked by falling dew,
The summer breeze still whispers 'We will remember you'.

Echoes of Culloden field - eh girls. There are two graveyards and memorials one to French POWs and one to American in the prison grounds - lovely spoot which we have been privileged to visit. Os and I have written about the Prison on at least two occasions.  These posts get longer and longer, Mark will tell me off soon.
[ Last edit by janscribe May 17, 2010, 05:27 PM ] IP Logged
Daisy
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Re: Spooks, spectres and the supernatural « Reply #112 on: May 17, 2010, 05:28 PM »
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Oh Jan .... love your style ... am quite teary eyed ....
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Re: Spooks, spectres and the supernatural « Reply #113 on: May 17, 2010, 07:52 PM »
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Oh Jan .... love your style ... am quite teary eyed ....
Go on with you! I'm not in the modern style Daisy - don't really know how they came to be published as they are actually understandable. Looked in on your happy banter with Elly on the election thread - glad to s ee she's probably cheered up a bit - bless her - she's a fun lass.
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Re: Spooks, spectres and the supernatural « Reply #114 on: May 17, 2010, 08:15 PM »
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Go on with you! I'm not in the modern style Daisy - don't really know how they came to be published as they are actually understandable. Looked in on your happy banter with Elly on the election thread - glad to s ee she's probably cheered up a bit - bless her - she's a fun lass.

Seriously Jan ... I found it very moving.  I thought the words were exquisite and very meaningful .... don't know that I'm expressing myself very well, but I loved it ...

As for Elly - someone needs to take a stick to her OR a cattle prod - whichever comes to hand first ... lol
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Re: Spooks, spectres and the supernatural « Reply #115 on: May 17, 2010, 08:45 PM »
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As for Elly - someone needs to take a stick to her OR a cattle prod - whichever comes to hand first ... lol
shocking
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Aileen
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Re: Spooks, spectres and the supernatural « Reply #116 on: May 18, 2010, 03:48 AM »
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..... Echoes of Culloden field - eh girls. There are two graveyards and memorials one to French POWs and one to American in the prison grounds - lovely spoot which we have been privileged to visit. Os and I have written about the Prison on at least two occasions.  These posts get longer and longer, Mark will tell me off soon .....
Utterly brilliant again, Jan.  Mark's away on his hols, but why would he object to something like this?

Anyway, I've been brushing up on my history - I just love doing research.  I ferreted around in books and manuscripts for Graham for 2 years while he tried (unsuccessfully) to write a book.  It was great fun though, even although it was frustrating for him.   Originally from Leeds, he did his PhD at Edinburgh University, where he was turfed out of his post as a lecturer in modern British history in 1990 due to cutbacks.  He ended up doing a lowly librarian course and became a Library Assistant.  He's now back to history, doing research for a voluminous work called "The History of Parliament", but his job is threatening to come to an end soon as the Parliamentary Trust he's working for has had its budget cut ... by Parliament!

The War of 1812

Although referred to as the War of 1812, it actually rumbled on until the spring of 1815, and was a little side-line to the Napoleonic Wars

The United States declared War on Great Britain on June 12, 1812. The war was declared as a result of long simmering disputes with Great Britian. The central dispute surrounded the impressment of American soldiers by the British. The British had previously attacked the USS Chesapeake and nearly caused a war two year earlier. In addition, disputes continued with Great Britain over the Northwest Territories and the border with Canada. Finally, the attempts of Great Britain to impose a blockade on France during the Napoleonic Wars was a constant source of conflict with the United States.

The war was fought on land and at sea, but as all the land battles were fought in America, it seems these prisoners were sailors or soldiers taken from American ships, mainly privateeers, captured by the British.  The general concensus seems to be that neither side won this war outright.

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Re: Spooks, spectres and the supernatural « Reply #117 on: May 18, 2010, 04:59 AM »
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Culloden - now there's a spooky place.  I've visted there twice, long before the Visitor Centre was opened, when it really was just rough moorland with moss-covered headstones marking the mass graves of various clans and others who fought for the Jacobite cause against the British Army led by the Duke of Cumberland.  It was the last battle fought on British soil.

I can tell you that, on both occasions, I could feel the hairs on the back of my neck prickle.

In the 1950s Bill Martin, the author of this poem, was working rear Resaurie Pass, Inverness, helping to build roads. His excavator uncovered human remains and the police were summoned to the site.

The remains were found to be those of a highlander who had been fleeing the slaughter of the aftermath of the battle at Culloden, Drummossie Moor.

Martin spent a lonely night beside the grave of the unknown clansman who had lain undiscovered for over two hundred years.

The Battle of Culloden, 16 April 1746, is not commemorated on any British Army Regimental Colours.  
        
    A Father's Farewell,
Culloden Moor, 16th April 1746  
  
I am nameless now, and I will die here,
Buried beside my son, beneath the bloody turf
With no lament or a prayer
To mark our passing.

Do you remember, Calum
When you held the banner, proudly
Before the adventure, and how we stood
At dawn, on the Drover's road by Lochearnhead
And mother wept as she waved farewell.
Farewell for ever and ever, my husband
And my sixteen-year old.

Now we charge, the last attack
Glorious and futile, musketry rattles
And the grape-shot scythes through our ranks
Rupturing flesh and bone.
See the scarlet coats advance,
Hurrahing, their bayonets glinting,
Moving towards us through the sulphurous smoke.
As I cradle your body, lifeless and broken
It's your mother that I see before me
And our house, thatch and stone and earth
And the rich dark peat we cut, together.

Soon, we both, once again
Shall see our home,
And the tall pines, by the water,
Then the pain will be gone and we shall laugh
As we lie in the heather on Benmore.
Mo ghaol agad a'Chaluim, mo fheoil, mo fhuil, mo h'anam.*
I whispered that, for you, as we stood in the terrible rain.
I shall cover you with my plaid, as if you were sleeping, child,
And this day shall pass into night.

*I love you, Calum, my flesh, my blood, my soul.

 
 
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Re: Spooks, spectres and the supernatural « Reply #118 on: May 18, 2010, 08:12 AM »
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Ooooh .. goosebumps ^
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Re: Spooks, spectres and the supernatural « Reply #119 on: May 18, 2010, 08:15 AM »
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No wonder they hated us so much. In the series of books written by Diana Gabaldon called the Outlander series her hero goes through Culloden and the American War if Independence (at least that's in the latest book which I haven't read yet) and Culloden seemed to me such a totally unnecessary war - but then most of them were. That is a truly beautiful poem and thank you for looking up the War of 1812. I'm sure I included it somewhere in one of my articles on Princetown but I have gathered so much information over the years and I can't remember some things without looking them up on my hard drive (or the Internet). Catch up with you soon.

Daisy thank you for your kind comments. There's only one more I can find and that's more a bit of fun for my Letterboxing book and I'll put it on later as I've got to go out for most of the day.

The English were so horrible to the Scots through history and yet whenever we come for a holiday we have met nothing but warmth and friendship but then I suppose it's trade and anyway most things are so different now thank heavens.
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