First Harvest

“The Harvest” by Camille Pissarro

She’ll come at dusky first of day,
White over yellow harvest’s song.
Upon her dewy rainbow way
She shall be beautiful and strong.
The lidless eye of noon shall spray
Tan on her ankles in the hay,
Shall kiss her brown the whole day long.

I’ll know her in the windrows, tall
Above the crickets of the hay.
I’ll know her when her odd eyes fall,
One May-blue, one November-grey.
I’ll watch her from the red barn wall
Take down her rusty scythe, and call,
And I will follow her away.

~ Francis Ledwidge
(August)

Lughnasa: August 7, 2011, 4:37 p.m.
August 6, 2012, 10:26 p.m.

First Harvest ~ Lammas

Harvest ~ Life ~ Wisdom

Seasonal movie:
Dancing at Lughnasa

Activities:
Read Moby Dick overnight
on the Charles W. Morgan
at Mystic Seaport

13 thoughts on “First Harvest

  1. I will search for this movie in Netflix! Admiring the haying picture. They are hay bundles in the fields everywhere around here. Thinking about how different it would be with an entire community helping with the haying.

    • Oh I hope you get to see “Dancing at Lughnasa,” Kathy! It must have been something else, community haying, and things are so different now, with machinery. Now we have blogging communities, among other things. :) Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have the strong backs needed for such strenuous work? And to have energy left over to live it up at the harvest dance?

    • You must be at the height of winter on your part of the globe, mags! I hope you get a chance to see the movie and let me know what you think of it – I get a little more out of it each time I see it. Perhaps you could watch it during your summer – it makes me feel in tune with the season…

  2. I’m such a silly goose. I read the poem and thought “there’s nothing about llamas in that!” :-)

    I then mistook lammas (a new word to me) for the elf-made, lambas bread, which the hobbits eat in Lord of the Rings.

    I then consulted Mr. Google and found several similar and yet different explanations from Pagan to Christian.

    My curiosity peaked, I then had to learn about Lugnasa. Found this about the play itself: ” Dancing at Lughnasa is a 1990 play by dramatist Brian Friel set in Ireland’s County Donegal in August 1936 in the fictional town of Ballybeg. It is a memory play told from the point of view of the adult Michael Evans, the narrator. He recounts the summer in his aunts’ cottage when he was seven years old.”

    I like Meryl Streep and was surprised to learn that this film was made in 1998 and yet I’d never heard of it.

    I’d like to hear what you think of it when you see it on the 7th.

    • Oh dear, Sybil, I’m sorry my post caused you so much confusion! Some of the letters in that font are kind of hard to read. You’re not a silly goose by any means! I’m hoping my son will be by sooner or later to help me with the custom design features…

      It seems to me that many of the best movies never make it to the “regular” theaters. The nearest “art house and international” theater is a 45-minute drive from us. Sometimes I just look at what movie is advertised to be playing there and add it to my Netflix queue.

      That’s one thing I love about “Dancing at Lughnasa,” all the characters are coping with a changing world, each on her own spiritual journey and often clashing with other dearly loved members of her family. At the beginning of the movie, they buy a “new” radio and give it the name of an “old” Irish god, Lugh. It’s a bittersweet story of family love and the urge to follow one’s own path.

    • That must be something to see the Mennonites haying the way it used to be done everywhere. People were so much more “in tune” with the seasons – the added sunshine probably helped their health and vitality. Working hard and playing hard – I wish we had a harvest dance around here, but it is fun visiting all the roadside farmers’ stands and getting some very fresh veggies!

  3. Barbara,

    Thank you for honoring the season of Lammas. The first harvest! I believe I have seen Dancing at Lughnasa some time ago. I will have to see if I can catch it again!

    • You’re welcome, Jeff! It’s one of those festivals that make me wish I had a place big enough to host a harvest dance. But I content myself to mark it by watching the movie and eating whatever the farmers are offering by the side of the road from their first harvests…

  4. A quote from “Dancing at Lughnasa”:

    “But the memory of that summer is like a dream to me. A dream of music that is both heard and imagined, that seems to be both itself and its own echo. When I remember it I think of it as dancing, dancing as if language had surrendered to movement, dancing as if language no longer existed because words were no longer necessary.”

I'm curious to know your thoughts...