Visit to Labranda 24 April 2011


Sacred way from the valley floor
past sentinel rocks, needle pines
piercing the sky, thrusting into the
forever blue, carved the road by
banks of daisy poppy and
glistening in the sunlight then
shining of its own accord, quartz and
feldspar, that we may think is gold.


Hesitate at the entrance, be still
for all around, in and about, is speaking
of holiness, of sanctuary, of memory of
a Holy spirit that cleft the rock and
rent the sky asunder Great sounds came
that were but a whisper, the earth chattered,
the birds in chorus sang, all the animals of
which there were few, on their forelegs knelt
and then the sky turned red, gold, then an
unearthly black. Came a diadem star then shone, a halo
then suddenly the glorious figure of God,
revealed though those looking on were blind.
For no one sees this God, but hear they can,
touch they can and Love they can, for the sublime
whisper ,that enters in to the heart.


So Holy was this place, that many came to
the sacred spring where healing waters flow.
A place watched by tortoise and by frogs
with golden skin and emerald eyes.


Soldiers came to guard the valley floor
the city of Mylasa and the Sanctuary..
Minor Gods came too and sacrifice was made.
A double axe was made symbolic of the clefted rock
not for any kind of execution, but made to show that the
dual axe and heavy stave was in fact a trinity, reminder
that all things governed are by three kept within the law.
Then at the solstice on steps carved into the dual rock
a Holy man would ascend through dark clouds
that formed as a Holy wraith, he a Golden Chalice took,
placed it at the pinnacle, as voices mysterious sang,
a Heavenly Choir of Angels, a calm and then such stillness,
that even the stars could be heard in unison, planets in orbit
sweeping around the Sun like the great breath of life given
to all creatures and to mortal Man.



Who made this place, for once, is of no import.
Who lived here, who lay in the lofty tomb of no consequence.
For this is but a reminder for us all of who we really are.
Mere mortals on earth, angels in heaven ,or we who have
forsaken, forgotten to lift the veil of ignorance :
The truth is here, unseen, untouched but through the heart is known.
Better this be an Oracle, than bread for fish who yearn for Love
and an ocean wide..

( As is the feather on the breath of God….Hildergaard de Bingen )


Terence O’Neill-Joyce, Labranda, Turkey

24 April 2011

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