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Fir flathemon - the stones of Tara speak

Many metal cloak pins glittered in the first rays of the sun. It rose golden, just a little left of the distant hills to the north. From the assembly a person of potential stepped forward and walked towards the waiting chariot. Two horses, both white this time, looked at the human knowingly. Taking a deep breath the candidate climbed onto the chariot. The horses turned their heads in acknowledgement. They did not rear, they did not stamp the ground. They were as silent as the watching crowd.

The figure bent and took up the cloak that lay across the chariot’s frame. Wrapping it around broad shoulders the cloak fitted perfectly. And the crowd noticed this, but said nothing. Precisely and carefully the reins were picked up and with a gentle shake the horses urged forwards.

In front of the chariot stood Blocc and Bluigne. Grand and grey, stones created in another world, many aeons ago. Barely a hand, sideways, could pass between them. And yet the chariot headed steadfastly towards them, at a trot, at a canter, then pushed by the rising strength of the sun, charging at the stones. And they opened before the chariot and it passed through.

The crowd stood in silence still. The cloak had fitted, the stones had parted. Would the earth confirm with the third sign?

Gradually as the sun rose so did the chariot, climbing the hillside towards the standing stone, the white granite Lia Fail. At full pelt again the chariot dashed across the grassy pastures, catching the axel against Lia Fail as it flew along. And the stone screeched and roared. And the wisdom of the earth cried forth, and the new ruler slew the chariot round to face the sun.

And the crowd, finally, cheered. For a person of honesty, truthfulness and wisdom stood before them in splendour, the risen sun lighting the honourable face in a golden glow. A royal personage was amongst them. The crowd could acknowledge the new leader for all human beings, as the earth and stones had spoken.

Page last updated: 12th Jan 2011