Radio Show – Episode 36 – October 27, 2019

One thing I love about producing Forest Halls Celtic is that I have times each week when I go “foraging” for music that is new to me. I’m especially eager to discover younger voices, and not just choose from my favorites of 20-30 years ago (though I enjoy playing those too!).

I’m especially delighted with some of my discoveries this time round:  One is Scottish contemporary folk singer, Kris Drever, singing  a song based on John Steinbeck’s articles in 1936 called the Harvest Gypsies, about the lives of the migrant workers of California. This song is lively and a joy to listen to, even as it presents a harshness of life that is still the reality of many groups of people today. Another is a piobaireachd — the classical music of the great Highland bagpipes — beautifully arranged by pianist Chris Gray. And let’s not forget the harps! We hear from Maeve Gilchrist, Julia Lane, Rachel Newton and Seckou Keita (kora, a 22-string African harp), and Cécile Corbel. In Cécile’s piece we hear a melody commonly played by beginners to the harp turned into a whole new version!

12:00: Forest Halls Celtic – Show 36/Spookytree – Lochaber No More
12:01: Annie Grace – Jock O’Hazeldean
12:04: Maeve Gilchrist – Peerie Joel’s Waltz (Ale Moller)
12:09: Kris Drever – Harvest Gypsies
12:12: The Bothy Band – The Strayaway Child
12:17: Nicola Benedetti – Coisich a Ruin (Walk My Beloved)
12:23: Julia Lane & Fred Gosbee, Castlebay – All Soul’s Night/Lament for Owen Roe
12:29: Rachel Newton – Here’s My Heart Come Take It
12:32: Rachel Newton and Seckou Keita – Willow
12:37: Chicouté – Go to the Ewe-Bughts, Marion / Tourbillon matinal
12:42: Cécile Corbel – Brian Boru
12:48: Chris Gray – MacKintosh’s Lament (Cumha Mhic an Toisich)

We’re also hearing right now Show 15, “A Wondrous and Spooky Samhain.”

Listen to both for the next two weeks — as well as Show 21 — snuck in on the air today by a tech-pixie!


P. S. I just realized that this is the birthday of the small harp featured in this photo. Not the harp’s actual date of completion, but the day it showed up on my doorstep after a long journey from Scotland and Ardival Harps,  across the ocean and continent, with delays due to 9-11. This little harp is 18 years old. Happy birthday, Snowy Owl!

Adventuring with Ki/Kin

Ki/Kin for the living beings of Earth - art by Jane Valencia
Ki/Kin for the Living Beings of Earth – art by Jane Valencia

This post follows my first: Pronouns for the Beings of Nature – I’m using Ki/Kin

I’ve been musing about how to adapt ki and kin to possessive, objective, reflexive. As I use ki/kin and seek to expand the usage, I find myself inspired by the fact that I use a singular “they/theirs” so as to step outside of he/she (an example is “Each child will choose their book.”). I also find myself inspired by Northern Flicker’s call (“keer”), which I frequently hear these days outside my home and around our island.

As a result of both the usage and the sound, I find myself speaking like this:

Deer moved slowly across the yard. Ki turned toward me. Kir ears flicked. There ki is! Those hoofprints are kis.

Yes, I could have easily used gender pronouns for the deer. Let’s try it for Rainbow.

Rainbow spun outward from cloud and sunlight. Ki touched Earth. Kir colors brightened. There ki is! The sparkle on dew drops are kis.

Another example:

Kin dipped and soared over the yard. I called to kin. Kehr wings tipped in the sunlight. There kin are! That is kehrs.

Sometimes I find myself saying (drawing from some resonance from my study of Old English). “That is ki-held,” “that is kin-held” when working with some sense of belonging, intention, stewardship, but wanting to step away from the sense of possession/ownership in my language usage.

As I type all this blog post, my usage feels clumsy, ill-formed. But in my real-life practice with the beings I encounter, my words feel more like play, like kneeding dough, or shaping clay. Expressing through gesture and sound something that I deeply feel connecting us, then smooshing that clay and shaping again. Not having to agree with anyone yet about particulars, I allow the forms to change.

Light is Returning - art
stamp art by Jane Valencia

I love the idea of opening our language, dancing with words, feeling where ki becomes alive and natural and tender – a truer reflection and expression of the magic I experience and hope to share as we renew and deepen our relationships with one another in every ripple of being.

Words are a storytelling. When we shape language together, we enter a story weaving. A renewed tale for our times about who we really are within this vibrance and tapestry that is Life.

I wonder what story I may discover if I request ki/kin usage for myself.

Do you use ki/kin? What language or  respect do you offer to our more-than-human family in your daily life? Do you feel like you’re trying on new shoes that haven’t shaped to you yet, or does your gesture feel natural, or some other feeling? Please share below!