Mary Medlicott, Storyteller and Author - Storyworks

Posts Tagged ‘Birmingham’

Storytelling Starters ~ Cam Ceiliog

Saturday, January 5th, 2013

The stride of the cockerel may not be massive but it’s certainly very determined – a purposeful strut! And that’s why I love the Welsh phrase, cam ceiliog.

Ceiliog means cockerel, cam is a step or a stride, and cam ceiliog describes the way in which the light draws out after the Winter solstice. It happens by small but sure degrees, not in one giant leap. At this time of the year – and Happy New Year by the way – you really begin to notice the change. After the darkness of late December, and perhaps with the resoluteness of the New Year spirit, you start to notice the earlier light in the mornings, the evenings going on longer. ‘Cam ceiliog’ does it as the mother of one of my schoolfriends always used to remind us. She was a very positive woman.

That link between the cockerel and the coming of light is an appealing association. I remember the cockerel’s distinctive doodle-doo-ing from childhood mornings on my grandparents’ smallholding. I remember it too from more recent times, for instance on holiday in the Sierra Tejeda in Spain. The wake-up call would sound out round the village (and sometimes, because it recurred all day, it would finally become exasperating).

Stories that link us to the earth and its creatures

I love associations between human beings and nature. To me, they’re one reason why we could do worse at the start of a year than remind ourselves of the numerous stories that link us to the earth and its creatures. For where would we be as humans if we lost a sense of those links? For one thing, we’d be at risk of losing a proper sense of the richness of this planet and our place as one – but only one – of the species that inhabit it. (more…)