Nocturnal

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Night-time serves up a slender slice of moon,

proposes a toast of evening dew

and watches as giddy shadows stagger before they fall.

Nocturnal animals begin to stir – the night is theirs.

Tempted by the dark, young mice come out of hiding

thinking “surely that ole cat won’t find us here”.

The sound of silence is masked

by an endless chirping of crickets,

but their white noise does nothing

to lessen the chill of the coyote as he howls.

A pesky raccoon clanks a rusty bucket

when he can’t resist meddling where he doesn’t belong.

New moon or full moon or no moon at all;

inhabitants of the darkness, predator or prey,

adapt to whatever light they have.

Poised on his perch, with a hoot every now and then,

an owl waits patiently for the moon to grow.

Once it does, the mice who survived the cat in the dark

will huddle together in fear,

for they’ve seen the terror of a hungry owl

who hunts by the light of the moon.

 

My response to today’s one-word prompt: Meddle

Owl Painting – Artwork by Dennis Dalton.pinterest.com

Weekly Photo Challenge: Order

William Morris once said – “Large or small, [the garden] should be orderly and rich.”

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Not far from Galway, Ireland at Kylemore Estates is a 6-acre formal Victorian walled garden where orderly beds of flowers and vegetables are arranged against the backdrop of the Connemara Mountains. It is filled with plants introduced to the Irish bog environment prior to 1901. The garden was the winner of the Europa Nostra Award in 2001.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Order

These photos were taken the first week of May, too early for a full display of summer color. Just imagine it now!

Toast for Breakfast

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Yesterday I had toast for breakfast, with a little butter, of course. It was nice and crisp. Neither good for me, nor bad. Just nice. This morning I had toast for breakfast, with a little butter, of course; except today I added honey…and cinnamon…and sugar. It was so good; my favorite way to eat toast. I couldn’t dawdle or the honey would run through my fingers and down my sleeve, but I enjoyed every minute! Life should be like that – enjoyed before it runs through your fingers and down your sleeve.

My response to today’s one-word prompt: Crisp

Just for Kids…Just for Fun!

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Little Abby

Abby is the tabby cat who lives next door

She’s not like any other cat you’ve ever known before

She sits out in the moonlight putting fireflies in a jar

then frees them if they promise to fly straight to where you are

So, when you see a firefly, say “thanks” to little Abby

I think she’d do most anything if it would make you happy

Me too!

My response to today’s one word prompt: Trace

(because this is just a trace of the silly nonsense I can write for my Grand-kids!)

Image from Bing search

Is it a Castle or a Palace?

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Eilean Donan Castle – my favorite!

Across the globe, castles and palaces are viewed as some of the most beautiful and historic structures in the world; which, as I recently discovered, is certainly the case in Scotland and Ireland. But what makes one a castle and the other a palace? Much like the difference between a house and a home, a lot depends on why it was built, how it is used, and who lives there. In general, castles are built for defense and protection, while palaces are meant to radiate luxury and elegance.

A castle is a fortified structure; a base from which an attack can be planned and carried out. Castles have certain architectural features that only other castles have; like moats, gatehouses, round towers, battlements and exterior slits for archers to fire arrows through. They are built with thick walls, usually of stone and bricks. According to history, castles were first constructed in the ninth century and are found mostly in Europe and the Middle East.

A palace is built to show off wealth and power. It is really nothing more than a beautiful place to live! Constructed with spacious halls and lovely rooms, the purpose of a palace is for the ease, enjoyment and diversion of the people who live inside it, usually royalty or other nobility. Palaces have been around longer than castles and are found all over the world.

Like a house, a castle is meant to provide shelter. Like a home, a palace is meant to provide warmth, comfort and space for a family to live together in harmony and love. With that in mind, I suppose the ultimate goal would be for a castle to feel like a palace; and a house to feel like a home.

Here are some castles that feel like a palace inside (and also a bit like a home):

Inveraray Castle, Scotland

Glamis Castle, Scotland

The following castles, while still beautiful, are not quite as elegant inside:

Kilkenny Castle, Ireland

Blair Castle, Scotland

Blarney Castle in Ireland is a good example of strength and ease of armament:

In Edinburgh, Scotland, a castle sits at the top of a hill ready to defend the palace down at the bottom.  Impressive Edinburgh Castle dominates the skyline while the Palace of Holyrood House, the Queen’s official residence in Scotland, is the anchor at the other end of the Royal Mile. Attached to the palace are the remains of Holyrood Abbey.

Edinburgh Castle:

Holyrood Palace:

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Ruins of Holyrood Abbey:

My response to today’s one-word prompt: Radiate

All photos were taken on a 2017 trip to Scotland and Ireland.