image courtesy of Botanical Com
A Modern Herbal

Cowslip is a European plant related to the primrose, with several small deep-yellow fragrant flowers growing from a single stem. It is native to temperate regions of the Old World. The oxlip (Primula elatior) is also closely related. (Primula veris, family Primulaceae.)

Cowslip Fruit Cake

Cowslip Fruit Cake takes its name from the deep-yellow and the fragrance of the flower.

Cover 12 ounces Sultanas and 4oz glace cherries with water boil for five minutes only.
Cream 8 oz of butter and 8oz of sugar for half an hour until light and fluffy.
Add three beaten eggs gradually.
Fold in 12 oz of Plain Four and 1 teaspoon baking powder sifted together.
Add 2 tablespoons of Lemon Essence
Add 1 tablespoon of Vanilla Essence
Add 2 tablespoons of boiling water
Add 2 tablespoons of sweet sherry

Place in 8 inch tin lined and bake for 2 and a half hours at 250 - 270

Alone and Content

It's not much, this place,
a cave, with a lean-to porch
and a scrub oak for a door
but it's mine,
it's where I want to be,
alone on my grassy, craggy hill
with only my thoughts,
a mongrel dog,
and the wild land
to feed my soul.

It's here,
where, at night,
owls speak
and where,
as the sun rises,
the earth shares its wisdom.

I am alone yet content
in my cave,
with a lean-to porch
and a scrub oak for a door.

Vi Jones İOctober 21, 2003

Lemurian Hermitage

image courtesy of Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco


Once upon a time there lived a hermit in the wilderness...

The hermit has a long established popular image: the pious, bushy - bearded old man sitting in front of a cave in the wilderness.

In this exercise we explore this intriguing tradition of the Hermit and meditate upon the contemplative solitude that has appealed not only to Christian hermits but also artists, philosophers, travellers and writers from ancient times until the present day.

Excursion to the old Lemurian Hermitage

I lead the way up the steep mountain path, my blue backpack filled with the makings of afternoon tea. My back pack carried all the implements for the craft of coffee making. A large thermos filled with hot water; a tiny thermos with rich Carnation evaporated milk; sachets of sugar to replenish energy; Arabica blend ground for a plunger; a sturdy bodem and a tupperware container filled with fragrant slices of Cowslip Fruit Cake.

Upon arrival we split up, finding sanctuary within quiet corners of the old hermitage.

As the sun began to slide behind the mountain tops we gathered, the steam rising from the thermos, the heat from our cups warming our hands. The fragrant cowslip melted in our mouths as, in turn, we shared the sweets of solitude.

In the Hermits Garden

Someone said,
"you reap
what you sow,"
if you wish to
cultivate love,
you must plant
your hoarded seeds
of pain.

No sharp spade;
cup dark soil
tenderly, pat
the earth gently -
water and sun
will do the rest,
accept this
daily task:
remember, and forgive

Lisa Phoenix 2003

Benign Indifference


without doubt.
their certainty
is absurd

so sure!

why do their small certainties
matter to me?


positively inflexible.
their certainty
is absurd

so sure!

why do their small truths
matter to me?
who can be certain
of little more
the benign indifference
of the universe

Heather Blakey 2003