Why Andalusia Day? Because it’s this Thursday and it’s St David’s Eve.

Linnet’s Wings Editor Marie Fitzpatrick is based in Andalusia. And 12 years ago this very week I was there. I didn’t know Marie then. I was at a pretty low ebb, having just resigned from teaching in Autumn ’06. I felt very trapped having gone through a horrible year of being bullied out and able trust no one and at last I told them to shove it — but it’s a hard thing to put a career (and livelihood) behind you. My husband said we’d manage financially — but what would I do? I’d always been a teacher. I really wanted to move on but I was finding everything difficult! I was sad and hurt and had no purpose left in life. I was depressed! My husband, who knew what I’d been through, decided a change of scene was just the thing — and it was!

All packed and staring out of the window on the eve of the trip, I saw a little jasmine flower.

At the end of February jasmine flowers are dying, dropping to the ground. This one was trying to drop, trying to let go, but she was a bit stuck — like me — toying with change but not quite getting anywhere — not quite prepared to let go. Reticent. Afraid. And so, out of empathy, I wrote Catching the Wind (LISTEN using the link below)

While we were away, we watched a Lunar Eclipse over the bay at Benalmadena and we visited Tangiers on Andalusia Day (28th Feb). I was so stunned by the place, I wrote A TRIP TO TANGIER and when I got back and I posted it in Writewords and I posted my poem Catching the Wind.

And that was the beginning. I’d let go! I was away wherever the wind might take me. It took me to The Shine Journal who published Catching the Wind, to Bewildering Stories who took A Trip to Tangier, to Every Day Poets and to The Linnet’s Wings who published Three Pounds of Cells.

It’s a ill wind…as the saying goes.

Our Spring Linnet is due out in March. It’s looking great with some Irish poems for St Paddy and a nice shift in landscape between Winter and Spring. I’ll be back in March with another reading and some more reminiscences and maybe a bit more new work.

Happy Andalusia Day, Happy ST David’s Day and don’t forget Pancake Day!