Spoken and Written Words-Lindisfarne and Abbotsford

Hi! We’ve been on the move the last two days, transitioning to our next home base. Our last day in Lindisfarne was pretty chill until the amazing poetry reading. The next day we made our way to Durham, with an afternoon stop in Abbotsford. We went from England to Scotland and back to England within the course of a day.

On our last day in Lindisfarne, Susan mentioned that we were going to a poetry reading in the evening. I was expecting a prim Englishman to recite imitations of Wordsworth and I wasn’t looking forward to it. That’s not what I got. Joel McKerrow is a white man from Melbourne, who’s married with children, and happens to also have dreadlocks. After his first poem, he quoted Brene Brown and I was hooked. For those who know Greg Boyd, Joel McKerrow is his Australian soul brother.

Here is his poem about letting his kids remind him of the wonder of the world

The next morning we left, with many thanks to Don and Sam for their gracious hospitality. We made a stop in Abbotsford, which is on the border between Scotland and England. The castle was the home of the prolific writer Walter Scott. Our group had read his work in Edinburgh, and it didn’t really resonate with me at that point. But walking through the ornate house, knowing that a man of such high celebrity lived and worked and died there, I was able to better understand the novel he had written. This is the definition of “literature on location”, one of our primary objectives of this journey. Unfortunately, Scott had financial problems and died in debt in the Abbotsford dining room.

The two experiences illuminated both the aspirations and pitfalls that are possible in a creative life. McKerrow’s passion and articulation serve as a role model for how I wish to express my truth, and Scott’s creativity does the same, while his downfall is a cautionary tale. These two experiences were great opportunities for reflection, but both pale in comparison to Durham Cathedral…stay tuned!

Bon Voyage 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 E

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