I encountered someone today who bore a strong resemblance to another person that I used to know (and loathe) many years ago. Initially I thought it was the same person with a couple of extra stone piled on, and then I realised the voice was different and the new person was a bit too tall anyway. However, I still found myself responding cautiously to this stranger, expecting those vindictive and unpleasant personality traits of the thankfully long-since avoided original.
So a mini "exorcism" is required for me to let go of unpleasant memories enough to see the real person and not the echo. On the positive side, I'm sure there is a short story idea there about the power of memory to possess the present!
Logically I know that there is no reason to suppose that these two people share any more than a similar bone structure, but the ghost of the former overshadows the latter. Advertisers and spin doctors have long since known that evoking positive (or negative) memory associations to link one thing with another is a potent tool when attempting to sell a product or an ideology. Whatever logic tells us, we live in a world of memory and emotion and imagination where what is going on in our heads is almost as important (sometimes more so) than what happens in immediate physical reality. Whilst we are warping reality, I wonder what ghosts overshadow me in the eyes of other people?
Though ghosts are a topic better suited to Samhain and the winter season, and here we are at the emergence of summer when my thoughts turn to other types of spirits ~ the ghillean-dhu awakening from their slumbers to unfurl their leaves and walk the forests once again, the pwca shifting and turning and spreading tongue-in-cheek mischief.
A pageant to honour the Pooka will be held on August 23rd, so if you are a polytheist performer (poet, storyteller, singer, puppeteer etc. and want to perform, do get in touch!) Time to tell some tales of summer.


  1. We all make snap judgements about people, based on how they look, what they're wearing and what has happened in the past with people who looked similar or wore the same clothes. It's part of our survival mechanism - we need to quickly decide if a person is friend or foe. I think the trick is to recognise we're doing it - as you have done with this person you've recently met.


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