Celebrating the 20th Anniversary of the Organic Centre

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The Observer’s SPARK Writer in residence Monica Corish celebrates the 20th anniversary of the Organic Centre in Rossinver.

The Observer’s SPARK Writer in residence Monica Corish celebrates the 20th anniversary of the Organic Centre in Rossinver.

Alchemists in Wellingtons

Taste of dill

on the tongue, wild garlic.

Song of a blackbird’s yellow beak.

A coppice of luminous willow

the colour of longing.

Beneath Sheenun

of the watchful fairies,

a silence.

Between birdsong

and plash of frog,

a silence

heavy with riches,

where Leitrim’s leaden clay

transmutes, in the crucible

of compost heap and wormery,

into apple trees, fennel,

brassica, runner beans.

A silence

tended

by alchemists in wellingtons,

men and women

who long to sow

their secret knowledge

wide and far:

faith in spring’s return;

hope for a wiser world,

a steadfast, all­season refusal

to despair; love

for this singular earth.