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Lifting my gaze

June 5, 2013

So much has been going on. As my nature seems to be such that I am both highly distractable and utterly obsessive, sidelining my blog felt right for a while. But no more. I am feeling ready to engage with other parts of my life again. To sit up and take notice.


Suddenly summer is here and forcast to be around till at least the weekend. Truly amazing. Granted, office-bound as I am, I won’t see much of it, but even so. Blackbirds flute morning and evening from the urban gardens all around me. Swifts scream across a blue sky. Robins plaint. Chaffinches indulge their little squelch of a song. Even the diurnal rhythm of the five-minutely planes serving Belfast City airport, their outlines and colours sunlit-clean and bright, are benign in this balm. The longest, if not quite the coldest, spring of this century so far is vanquished at long last. Summer, which seemed a broken promise, a gaudy tale of yore, is truly present. I’m not used to this. Not used to the fact that, for the next few days at least, I can trust it.


I’ve completed the chiffchaffs, I’m due to finish the robins this weekend – robins, the species that, thanks to my success with them in my Masters, started this whole adventure off. Fingers crossed that the results with this crop will bear out what I found with the previous, but who knows? That’s the scarey part about research. You just can’t control the outcome.


Very very soon, I’ll be done with this part of the analysis. The slogging, the eye-stinging detail, all that mind-numbing, emotion-achoring measuring will be done. Now I have to discover the patterns, see how they relate, turn it into a coherent narrative. Say what I think. I have to think.


To lift my eyes from the physical acoustic analysis, move deeper into the abstract. It’s a bit like lifting my gaze from the past, moving on with my life.


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  1. Exciting and powerful stuff!!!

  2. Your description of the birds and even planes is beautifully and artfully painted. I enjoy the descriptive words you use to give me a little hint at birdsong. I’m somewhat challenged by the words to use, not necessarily distinguishing the songs with the same ear you’ve cultivated, and I like, flute, scream, plaint, squelch! I hope you are able to hold onto a summer that was nearly as long as your winter. Your work sounds so interesting to me, and I’m sure your successes in completion are going to open even more doors. Are you ready for more symposiums? LOL! The offers are going to keep coming!

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