Sometimes your photos break my heart with the desire to be there. Yes, I have photos, from my Wild West Irish Tour too. Some good ones. And memories, all great, and small souvenirs. But most of all, embodied presence. Ireland, her people and her places, are with me. I’ll work on the photos, editing and labeling and such. I’ll carry some small touchstones, the carving from Michael Quirke, the jewelry from The Cat and Moon, the small white pebble from the path to the top of Slieve League.

It is hard to share what my trip meant to me, my friends and family expect interesting stories. Yes, I have some stories from my Wild West Irish Tour. Of an Irish farmer with a deep passion for landscape archaeology, whose farm has been in his family for over 350 years. Of the ruins of a 9th century church with a still-active graveyard and the softest light through its altar window. Of fierce wind and kind people, of holy wells and poetry of the soul. Of mystery and gratitude and prayers for the ones “back home” who are suffering. It’s not the photos or the souvenirs that tell my story. It’s the heart and soul of Ireland that rests within me. It’s both the wildness and the peace. And as you can see, trying to capture that in words is difficult. I may find my way there, to the words, to the stories, to the photos but for now, “IS D’ÉIRINN MÉ”, I am of Ireland.“

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