some thumbnails of my illustrations

some thumbnails of my illustrations
Please click on the links below to view my portfolio ........ Images copyright of Carrie Osborne

Friday, 6 April 2012

Of Golden Moonrise and Wolfish Tales...

I couldn't resist trying to get a picture of the Moonrise earlier this evening - she was huge, full and very golden, swathed in soft trailing gossamer scarfs of cloud (though the Moon comes out white in my photo) She seemed a gentle Moon tonight in a soft, still sky, gentling the shadows that are so often hard etched and chill when mooncast.
It seems a good image to bring the day full circle... I am still trying to find that elusive day to tie up my three unfinished paintings, when it will come I still don't know. But today I started clearing the outbuilding that will eventually become my studio, before heading off with the children for a picnic across the fields beyond our earthen 'Badger Lane' where the neighbourhood of diggers have turned out all their winter bedding all down the bank.

With my eldest whose mind is wonderfully enrapt by mythologies,we began to discuss Fenris, or Fenrir the Wolf, how he was tricked by the Gods into magical chains and how Tyr lost his hand. And then how Fenris eventually was to devour the sun when Ragnarok descended, plunging the World into Darkness and Ice.

As we walked home we talked on how Elora might outwit such a Wolf as Fenris if she were to meet him, and between us came up with a story I might one day try to write that has much to do with the Moon and explains why wolves seem (in stories) to howl for the Moon! I will keep the rest under my hat until I manage to tame the story with words on a page! Tee hee!

So, Wolves and Moons and then such a beautiful moonrise to end the day, what could be better...? I'll tell you, as we were saying goodbye to some dear friends who had come to play this afternoon what should glide low overhead out of the pale and empty sky, right over our house... A Red Kite! Unmistakeable V-shaped tail and long, broad splayed wings, huge and magnificent! I have only ever seen them in Wales and although I know they are increasing in numbers down in Exmoor, I never imagined we'd see a Kite in Somerset. I was so thrilled, I do hope he visits us again!

I will leave you with a powerful Wolfish poem by my favourite poet Ted Hughes that I have always loved called:


Inside the Wolf's fang, the mountain of heather.
Inside the mountain of heather, the Wolf's fur.

Inside the Wolf's fur, the ragged forest.

Inside the ragged forest, the Wolf's foot.

Inside the Wolf's foot, the stony horizon.
Inside the stony horizon, the Wolf's tongue.

Inside the Wolf's tongue, the Doe's tears.

Inside the Doe's tears, the frozen swamp.

Inside the frozen swamp, the Wolf's blood.

Inside the Wolf's blood, the snow wind.

Inside the snow wind, the Wolf's eye.

Inside the Wolf's eye, the North Star.

Inside the North Star, the Wolf's fang.

By Ted Hughes.


  1. Aha! I see I've been slightly rusty of memory and must correct myself! After looking it up I was reminded that it wasn't Fenris who devoured the Sun, but his son:

    '...part of the events of Ragnarök, after Fenrir's son Sköll has swallowed the sun and his other son Hati Hróðvitnisson has swallowed the moon, the stars will disappear from the sky. The earth will shake violently, trees will be uprooted, mountains will fall, and all binds will snap – Fenrisúlfr will be free. Fenrisúlfr will go forth with his mouth opened wide, his upper jaw touching the sky and his lower jaw the earth, and flames will burn from his eyes and nostrils.'

    Powerful stuff isn't it! I love the old Norse tales and the rich way of their telling... it must have sent shivers of terror down the spine to have listened to the Skalds recite these sagas in firelit halls in those days. Their words must have thronged the air with images and brought the Aesir to vivid life...

  2. Lovely post, Carrie - love wolf and moon lore and the poem gave me a great inspiration for the storytelling bit I am doing tomorrow when my class is here on a field trip. Always good to catch some inspiration for a new twist on tale-telling. Wonderful that you saw a kite. Around here we see bald eagles a lot, that is a thrill. Have a wonderful time sorting out your new studio, so exciting!!

  3. Good work on your lovely photo of the moon. I find it very difficult to capture an accurate image of the moon on film. Yesterday morning the setting moon was amazing. It was huge with a very delicate, yet definite, pinkish glow. Later in the day I heard the weatherman refer to it as the "Pink Moon". I've heard of the wolf moon, corn moon, and even the beaver moon, but never the "pink moon" until now.


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