Sunrise At Skellig Michael

Night’s paling azurite horizon
cloaked in a gossamer veil of clouds
briefly contests the sunrise
thus allowing nights last stars
some fickle final twinkling
before dwindling from sight

But the Sun has promises to keep
a rendezvous with day
already marked as tardy
by screeching of gulls and gannets
which orchestrate impatient puffin jigs

Sunbeams breach the clouds
gathering strength on far horizon
they surf the ridges of distant waves
gilding each crest in turn
in the race to meet the shore

Light pools around Skellig Michael
and creates a magic floating island
briefly trapped between sea and sky
mysterious as monks
now lost in mists of time

My glimpse being but a pale shadow
snatched from distant flattened shore
leaves me envious almost
of those who contemplated in solitude
centuries of such miraculous dawns


Reader’s note: Skellig Michael, also known as Great Skellig, is a steep rocky island about 16 kilometres off the coast of County Kerry, Ireland. It is the larger of the two Skellig Islands. A celtic monastery, which is situated almost at the summit of the 240-metre-high rock, was built in 588, and became a World Heritage Site in 1996. My own meager experience of this glorious sunrise (from distant flattened shore) comes only by way of viewing the program ‘Sunrise Earth’ on Discovery HD Theater.

by Mary Havran

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