30.8.12

The stillness of a meditating Hare







It's 10 years ago, our first night in the new house and I can't sleep for excitment.

It is such a quiet spot that all I can hear is the sound of the endless silence ringing in my ears. I can't stop myself listening and trying to hear something I can recognise. But in no time I am hearing things that are not there at all.

Almost dawn, still tossing and turning I jump up to see my new surroundings in the morning light. The tall summer grasses are waving in unison, the Comeragh Mountains to the west are slightly misted over and just beneath my window a doe Hare and three leverets are sitting on the gravel path, utterly peaceful and unaware of my gaze.

The stillness of a meditating Hare was something I had never seen. Usually they are loping through the fields, and they can run very fast with their long hind legs. Now I often observe them staring into space for long periods especially in the evening or early morning.

Whenever I get close, as with this youngster nibbling in the garden, I am reminded of my first night here. How in the early misty morning, the Hare family introduced me to the meditative stillness that would soon become home. The way that Mother Nature again made her presence felt in my life, and that moment when I began to re-learn how to stare into space........






31 comments:

  1. How delighted you must be with these photos! (Especially the top one.)

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    1. Sure it was a pure delight to look into that little face:~))

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  2. I hope you won't mind my sharing this para from The House on an Irish Hillside. Your hare experience and mine chime so perfectly. When I saw my fellow I desperately wanted to photograph him but I was afraid to look away in case he disappeared. Now, seeing your pictures I'm glad I didn't. Yours are magical, far, far better than anything I could have taken myself. The hare you saw was a youngster, and mine, I think, was older; he was bigger and his meditation was certainly measured and mature. But their stillness and serenity are identical. And the knowledge that they're out there, seen and unseen, delights me whenever I think of it.

    'A few weeks ago I woke about five in the morning. There was a sliver of moon still hanging above the clouds, and the world outside the window was silver-grey. I got out of bed to go to the loo. As I came back, I saw a hare slowly circling Tí Neillí Mhuiris. There are folktales here in which circling hares are witches in disguise. In myths they’re gods, or servants of the goddess who bring messages from the moon. The hare in the garden was as big as a small dog, with powerful back legs and slanting eyes. The fur on his back was pale gold. His chest and belly were white. I moved from window to window, watching him. He moved slowly, turning his head from side to side, intently focused on single blades of grass or patches of herbs. He wasn’t eating. He touched them with his nose and then moved on. Every so often he stopped and sat back on his haunches. I watched his short ears turning as he monitored his world. When he turned the corner of the house, I could see marks left in the dew on the grass by his feet. Then, as I crossed from one window to another, he must have caught a movement behind the glass. He stopped, his head turned, and he looked straight
    at me. His slanting eyes were pale. I don’t know if he comes here each night, or where he goes in daytime. I don’t think he was a witch or a messenger from the
    goddess. But, meeting his remote stare in the waning moonlight, it was easy to believe that the silver-grey garden outside my window wasn’t mine, or even Neillí’s. It belonged to him.' - The House on an Irish Hillside Chapter 11, 'Nothing is Unimportant'.

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  3. Thank you so much for that magical description of your Hare! We really have shared that same experience of witnessing their incredible stillness. I am so interested in the folktales viewing them as witches or servants of the Goddess bringing messages from the moon. There is no doubt that watching them in their meanderings through he meadows and gardens feels like an encounter with a messenger of some kind for sure.....

    The House on the Hillside sounds wonderful (away with me now to buy!) such beautiful and sensitive writing, thanks for sharing that and your passion. C:~))

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  4. Oh wow, what shots!Nice one Foxy:)

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  5. Stunning photos. How lucky you were to capture such a rare sight. The only hares I've seen are far too quick for my camera and far too far away to get an in focus shot!
    June

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  6. Since you have moved, will you change the name of your blog? I love it the way it is but I am sure you would come up with something equally as evocative and poetic.

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    1. O no I haven't moved at all, that night was more than 10 years ago, and I am still here in Foxglove Lane. Thanks Heather Mavis for all your kind comments and support:~))

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    2. I realized that a few days ago when I reread your post. Silly me . You are most welcome to my kind comments and support. I pray The Creator God's blessings on you. May you see Him shine in the beauty around you, may you know His love and peace.

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  7. Oh..I just love the metaphor of this meditative hare. We can learn so much from the natural world around us - if we just take time to stop and listen. Like your sweet hare!!!

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  8. Fascinating that even these small creatures take the time to be still and in tune with nature around them. Beautiful post!

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  9. ...lovely photos and evocative words - are these Irish hares - I suppose they must be - we have the most beautiful huge and silent hares up here too ( North Pennine tops) where they are not hunted - one night late I was working on the computer and the dog started wuffing - full moon and I looked out the open back door to see two juvenile hares playing in the moonlight in the shorn field where during the day they had cut and baled the hay - I can still see them, in my mind's eye - thanks for bringing back the memory - x

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  10. I hope I can re learn how to start into space - I think I've lost that - and I am wanting it back!

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  11. Oh what a beautiful post, love it :) It has brought a tear to my eye, those wonderful images, our natural environment and it's wonderful animals should be cherished, that hare is soo cute. Would you believe I don't think I have ever seen them up that close before, I probably would have called it a rabbit

    All things nice...

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  12. This peaceful calmness of your photos and your immersion in nature is fascinating and soothing at the same time. A really beautiful place you're living at!

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  13. What a wonderful beginning to living in your new home. The hare seems so close and you have captured him so well. When we visited Ireland we woke up to see a hare in the garden it was magical and I still remember it vividly 11 years later.
    Sarah x

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  14. Oh...to sit and listen to the deafening silence of dawn, with only the sound of nature.!Your still captures are amazing and I am glad you have not moved house also :)

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  15. Wonderful images of your visitor. No hares here that I've seen but there's a family of rabbits who graze in a nearby field
    each evening.

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  16. To wspaniale, że jesteś tak zadowolona ze swojego nowego domu. śliczny zając z pewnością tej ciszy nie zakłóci.Pozdrawiam.
    It's great that you are so happy with their new home. cute bunny will not disturb the silence. Yours.

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  17. The rabbits that venture into my fenced garden come to sit and contemplate and snack a bit especially on the clover...I love watching them so peaceful and they remind me as well to stop and look, contemplate and enjoy the moment...fabulous pictures and what a magical story that made you feel you had come home!

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  18. How I envy you having (Irish) hares in the garden. We have hares in the next field but they are rarely seen. They also live in the area. Your photos are great. I wish you much happiness in your new home.

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  19. wow such photos ! i think i need to learn to be a bit more like a hare .... beautiful blog :)

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  20. beautiful. your blog is such a pretty and serene space. thank you for sharing.

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  21. Your first photo could be Peter Rabbit on the cover a Beatrix Potter book. You've captured the gentle softness of this wonderful creature :)

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  22. Beautiful pictures, beautiful post. You are so blessed to live where you do, but you don't need me to tell you that.

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  23. It's been a while but it's good to see that your blog is as beautiful and inspiring as ever. Foxglove lane is a truly dreamy place.

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  24. Delighted that you've got a few hares around - and that you managed to produce such lovely portraits...

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  25. Thank you all for your wonderful comments and support, each comment is treasured and appreciated and just spurs me on.
    Catherine X

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  26. Thank you all for your wonderful comments. It has been a busy week and it seems there are many Hare lovers in the world, so the chat was a bit hectic over on the FB page. It's just fantastic to know that so many people care about the natural world and the beauty therein:~)

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A big thank you for all of your comments, each and every one is much appreciated. Please use the contact page if you have questions that require a response, I will always reply.