Author Archives: colletteom

About colletteom

I am a writer of prose, poetry and books. My writing explores humanity's evolving consciousness.

Journey into Spring

I

Houses and fields, houses and fields

Crows on the wires, like a string of black beads.

A whistle blows, my destination it looms

Lost in my thoughts, it arrives all to soon.

II

I step on the platform and straighten my skirt

My phone starts to beep with a string of alerts.

I exit the station and hop in my car

a train carries on stopping near and afar.

III

The countryside glows with the promise of spring,

the mowers are mowing and the songbirds sing.

Bleating young lambs add to the sound,

daffodils trumpet, woodpeckers resound.

IV

Crocus and primrose make gardeners proud,

village greens full of these glorious crowds.

Buds on the trees seem to whisper and hush,

magnolias show off and camelias blush.

V

Joy is a fling with the nature of spring,

smiles that come from the simplest of things.

Open the windows, let in the light

there is hope in the air, ready for flight.

Poem by Collette O’Mahony

2021

Trial by Social Media

The divisiveness that plagues our society is perpetuated by leftist and rightist social media coverage, journalism and a host of movements. Daily, we seem to be frequently pitted against one another. At best, to express our opinion on the political, social or moral issues of the day, and at worst, spoon fed opinions on how to think and react. Whether it is capitalism, environmentalism, wokism or vaccines; the general public digests the current topic in the media and decides if they are ‘for’ or ‘against’ it. Surveys are taken across the demographic and the tide of public opinion is delivered. All any of these media partisans and vocal protesters only serve to drive a wedge between families, communities, races and nations.

We see with our eyes but we feel with our hearts. We should give ourselves credit to know the difference between outer appearance and our gut reaction. In other words, just because a person identifies with a specific gender, race, political party or movement does not make them any less of a human. In fact, all shades of behaviour, all skin tones and all genders belong under the umbrella we call humanity. Each member is a reflection of our combined psyche. Every facet of behaviour, every shade of prejudice, every cornerstone of morality resides in all of us, because if it presents itself in one part of the human race, it is present in all. Railing against another section of our community or nation indicates, not only the deep divide between humanity as a whole, but a chasm within the individual. It is this gap between understanding and compassion that we need to bridge within ourselves. When we blame, accuse or publicise our opinions against another person(s) under our human umbrella, we are levelling blame at our own shortcomings. It says ‘I cannot forgive, so therefore I must blame.’ Perhaps, this is the crux of our social divide, a lack of forgiveness and understanding for our human flaws. Revenge and retribution sit side by side in the jury that condemns our fellow human. I am not talking about heinous crimes here, but the lesser crime, albeit destructive, of judging and blaming others because we are unable to process our reaction and emotions to any given situation or event.

It is our duty to actively contribute to the evolution of humanity as a whole. If we are not to self-destruct, we must take responsibility for our emotions, including our anger, guilt, judgement and arrogance. We must seek out what unites us rather than what divides us. If we read or hear something that someone has done to upset us, feel that feeling fully. We need to allow our inner response mechanism to surface in an emotionally intelligent way. We must own the feeling rather than projecting it onto those around us, or using the social media’s story of the day to vent our inner frustration. By taking responsibility for our emotional reaction in any given situation, we are not only displaying emotional intelligence, but we are contributing to our evolution of consciousness as a species. The world, and our precious planet will be all the better for it.

Collette O’Mahony

12/03/2021

Relationship Myths

When we develop an intimate crush on a person, we see only fragments of who they are. The gaps are filled in by our imagination. Two people seeking an ideal partner, meet on a crossroads of desire and expectation. Any small sign that indicates the person fulfils one or more aspects of our mental criteria is enough for us to label them as the ‘one’. The rest of our wish list we project onto them. When we see someone as an ideal candidate for a relationship, we create little fantasies in our head about the future. We expect the desired person to slot into this role.

Investing in a fabricated story of a relationship ties you to the outcome, so that when a split happens, it feels like tearing strips of fiction from your skin. The pages of the relationship come undone when you realise that your partner is not the person scripted into the story. One or both of you awaken as complete strangers, and in some cases enemies, from the love story.

If you pay attention to people and really listen to them, rather than using interpretation, it allows their true essence to shine. After all, it is the initial feeling that attracts you to a person. Rushing in with needs and desires places a big expectation on a partner. Expecting someone to fulfil a role you place on them is a form of emotional blackmail. If they have low self-esteem or other emotional issues, they can feel love is only shown to them when they meet the conditions placed upon them. Many of us are conditioned from an early age to believe in romance and fairytales. Yet the experience for many is of hurt, betrayal and disappointment. When we are unfulfilled in love, we are constantly waiting for the fairytale to work out, choosing illusion over reality. Taking responsibility for your emotions frees you from blind romance and chasing after impossible ideals. When you see a person for who they truly are, accepting their light and shade, they start to blossom, just as you begin to blossom when you are accepted exactly as you are. People grow in the light of acceptance as the natural characteristics of a person begin to shine through.

Someone who you find attractive usually has qualities you wish to emulate. They serve as catalysts for undeveloped emotions to expand and grow. An emotionally inexpressive person may find they are attracted to a nurturing, caring person who encourages free expression of feeling. Someone suppressing shame and guilt about their physical body may find they are attracted to a sensual person who encourages them to embrace their sexuality. The quality you admire in others indicates the part of you that requires expansion and growth.

As you mature emotionally, any suppressed emotion within you tugs at your feeling body and impresses pain upon the mind. This energy is reflected in the dynamics of a relationship. Therefore, a loved one can simultaneously exhilarate and frustrate you. They push your buttons to release knots of energy that may have remained dormant for many years. This is the purpose of an authentic relationship, to help you grow and mature in love. We enter relationships to share information and experiences that enhance our journey, and the feeling of extending and receiving love. Not all relationships last forever, but the experience we gain from them does.

Extract from my book ‘In Quest of Love’ – A guide to inner harmony.

Collette O’Mahony

Authenticity

Our level of thinking is directly related to our authentic self. The more we think, the less authentic we are and the less thinking, the more authentic we become. It’s a conundrum. How do we lessen our thoughts without overthinking it? Some people are masters at switching off and allowing their flow of thoughts to gently drip at a slower pace. Others find that the more they try to turn off the thinking tap, the more gushing and muddied the waters become. Meditation is generally cited as the best approach to quietening the mind. However, it is not a quiet hat to pull over your thinking cap to silence all your thoughts. It takes continuity of practice.

The road to authenticity begins at the point when we can no longer live with our conditioned self, the self bound by tradition, beliefs and expectation. We may come to this point through a personal crisis, or perhaps we might come in contact with an authentic person who ignites the flame of the authentic self within us. In my case, it was a combination of both. If we do not undertake this journey, we will continue to struggle and blame others for our shortcomings and frustrations. Worse still, we will project our dissatisfied self onto the people around us. Life is a mirror, it will reflect and attract the many facets of our character. Everyone is living a life created by their thoughts and these thoughts are generally caused by early conditioning, limited beliefs and expected achievements.

We must allow the emergence of our authentic self, we must encourage it, water it with conscious exercises such as breathing. Read the words of spiritual masters. Practice mindfulness, not only through meditation but in mundane tasks also. Become present to whatever it is you are doing in this moment. Otherwise, we will become misanthropes, at odds with ourselves and our fellow man because we cannot bear to see our limitations reflected to us through their thoughts, words and actions. Every political leader, celebrity or friend will become a mirror which we will want to crack from top to bottom because of the feeling it evokes in us.

Authenticity is a kind of inner rebellion. The true self struggles to outgrow the tight bud of ego, and to bloom in all its glory. After all, it is a seed of the cosmos. No less a star than those spilling forth from any cosmic nebula, straining to make their mark in the galaxy. We are star seeds, planted by the governing principle of the cosmos. To bloom, we must allow our conditioned self to wither, and watch as our authentic self flowers and brightens up our corner of the universe.

Collette O’Mahony

18/02/2021

Evolving as a Species.

The embrace of loved ones, moments shared in a busy café, or the joy of driving to a favourite beauty spot for a bracing walk are all simple pleasures put on hold for almost a year now. Loneliness, illness and death have shadowed our communities and our nations, and the coping mechanisms people employ to deal with stress, anxiety and grief have been stripped away during successive lockdowns. Social distancing, a term in itself that seems to contradict the purpose of society, has caused a secondary impact that will reverberate for years to come, perhaps changing forever our habits and rituals as a society.

We were cautioned about the catastrophe that awaited us if we didn’t adapt our ways and reduce our carbon footprint on the environment. Scientists and environmentalists issued a chorus of warnings about the perilous state of our planet. Our planet was in danger and we, humanity, were the cause. It seems to me that we were always the ones in danger, the planet existed millions of years before us, it knows how to rid itself of threats to its continuance. Maybe it is an arrogance in humans that we felt we must save the planet. We must save ourselves from the reaction of the planet if we continue to abuse its energy supply. The planet has its own intelligence and will deal with us in its own way. Unfortunately, there is no vaccine for ignorance. We cannot ignore the fact that we do not own the earth’s resources, we are guests here. If a guest entered our home and started pilfering our belongings, or littering our living room carpet with plastic and rubbish, there’s no doubt we would show them the door. The intelligence that guides us also guides the planet. It too, shows unwelcome guests the door.

Evolution has been happening on the planet for billions of years. The fittest survive, and thrive. Humans have thrived and multiplied to the detriment of other species. There is an imbalance. We must evolve as a species. This doesn’t mean we need to grow an extra thumb or expand our lung capacity. On a physical level, we do need to develop immunity against new viruses, however, the real shift must be an evolution in consciousness. We must develop an innate intelligence that connects us to the governing principle of the planet and the cosmos. If we continue to rely on the opinion of scientists and politicians to guide our path, we can readily ignore their opinions and advice. If we have a direct connection to the governing principle of the cosmos, we shall act accordingly, in harmony with every other living thing on the planet.

We must adapt and learn to interact with each other and the planet in a more conscious, harmonious way. Perhaps then we can return without guilt, or fear to our favourite beauty spots, cafés and bars.

Collette O’Mahony

09/02/2021

2020

It was already infected when it came our way
but the world gambled and played on at the 
game of life. We were halted in our tracks,
leaving muddy footprints on the elderly, the 
vulnerable, the carers and the poor.
We come out of this year knowing that 
all lives matter, and that there isn’t just one 
deadly virus but many and unfortunately, 
there is no vaccine for prejudice, ignorance 
and fear. For these afflictions, we must inject 
ourselves with tolerance, hope, and love.
May forgiveness and unity be the gifts we 
give each other this holiday season.

What is ‘Home’ ?

I am a seeker with a gypsy soul; adventure is the sum of my parts. Yet, it is always a kind of amiable pastime to dwell on the possibility of finding a place to call home. As the years roll by and the past recedes into a collage of faded photographs and occasional flashes of memory, I wonder what home means to me. Is it a country, a house, a family or merely a thought construct to tame my wandering soul?

For many people home means a family unit living under one roof. We grow up in our parents’ house with siblings and call it ‘home’. When we move out and make a new family unit, we call that home. I know several adults who always refer to the place they grew up as their home. I stopped that when my mother passed away, seventeen years after my father. Home left me and memories faded, no longer compounded by family get-togethers which invariably led down rural byways to childhood, enhanced by the passage of time into faded sepia photographs. Sometimes I dream in colour and I see the vividness of summer days spent on the farm of my childhood, tossing the hay, picking fruit, playing hide-and-seek with my sisters in the hay barn. Ironically, when someone presents me with a colour photograph from my youth, I recall the memory in black-and-white, a kind of foggy moment captured on camera. But my best memories are moments that no lens could capture, my reaction to the microcosm of nature, of life; tiny shells glistening like treasures in the sand, a butterfly emerging from its pupa, a bumble bee intent on tickling the extended fronds of a flower, tadpoles wiggling in a pool of water, endless moments in close proximity to unfolding life. Life birthing every new moment from the one before, like a telescopic event where years, seasons, days and moments in time recreated a new one especially for me. To me, this was home.

Decades on from my first close encounter with a ladybird tickling its way across my chubby fingers, I have witnessed many habitats and ecosystems on my travels and crossed paths with more poisonous creatures than my three-year-old self would ever care to witness. However, it is only when I return to the land of my youth, when I register specific smells and delight in the microcosm of local habitats, that I realise that I too, am a specific flower of this ecosystem. And this is what home means to me.

Collette O’Mahony

19/06/2020

Celtic Goddess Poetry – Part 2

Clíodhna
In Irish mythology, Clíodhna is a Queen of the Banshees in the Tuatha Dé Danann (A pantheon of gods). Clíodna is a powerful banshee that rules as queen over the fairy women of the hills. Irish legend has it that her mournful cry can be heart at midnight before the passing of a loved one.

Art by Frederico Bebber

Étaín

Étaín is derived from a diminutive form of an old Irish word for passion or jealousy. When Midir, an elder of the Tuatha Dé Danann ( Celtic pantheon of gods) falls for Étaín, he marries her much to the ire of his rejected first wife. In her jealous rage, she casts a spell on Étaín.turning her into a beautiful scarlet fly. Midir is unaware of the enchantment on his beautiful young bride. The magical winged creature becomes his constant companion and he loses all interest in other women.

Art by Jenny Buckley.

Sadhbh

In Irish Mythology (pron. Sive) was cursed by a dark sorcerer of the Tuatha Dé Danann. If he couldn’t have her, no-one would. He transformed her into a deer where she lived in the wilds for three years, trying to evade the hunters’ spear.
A servant of the sorcerer took pity on Sadhbh, and told her how to break the spell – If she set foot in one of the forts of the Fianna (Mythical tribe) the spell would be broken. Bounding through glens and forests she made her way to the home of Fionn mac Cumhaill (leader of the Fianna) where he was out hunting with his warriors. Thanks to Fionn’s magical hounds, she was spared. These hounds were also under a spell from their original human form and recognised the deer as a woman. Fionn and his party led Sadhbh back to his home and as soon as her hooves touched the ground within the fort, Sadhbh shed her deer’s hide and revealed herself as a beautiful woman.

Image by Daris Endreson

My first volume of poetry ‘The Soul in Words’ is available in paperback and e-book format. Find out more here. colletteomahony.com/published-books-paperback/