The Names Of Stars



when I was small
the oaks spoke
ancestral tongues
of the
Forest Mother


spinning twig
and branch
and root
and seed
the names
of stars


lightning cracked
spirit tongued
blue flamed
thunder rooted
words of power


sap and blood
we shared
rhizomal dreams
and songs
of wind
and rain
of Sun
and Moon
and deep Earth

we knew
let not
these memories
with the
last tree


but live on
in each
of us
the Forest


image : ‘Forest Spirit’, Rob Purday

For Lonnie

There is hope in care

There is hope in

The discarded things

This is your Earth

This is what you have

To learn and to care for

Wake up one thing


show love

give love


your creative power

To the discarded

Things, People


This is your Earth

“…the harvest is plentiful

The harvesters are few….”

In respect and honour of a beautiful soul,
Lonnie Holley

Counter Mapping

Beautiful and rich, these films and article reintroduce the inner world of mapping, inhabited by memory, living spirit and the stories of who we are….

“The Zuni maps are, first and foremost, for the Zuni people. But they hold a powerful message for a non-Zuni audience as well: we are all part of a greater process. We would not be here if the sun did not rise every morning, if the rivers stopped flowing. The maps are in many ways an invitation: How would you map the places that live in your memory? What are the voices of the land that are forgotten, unheard? To ensure the resilience and well-being of the places where we live, we cannot assume that land is simply ours for the taking, a means to our own ends. The Zuni maps remind all of us that we, too, must take the time to deeply listen, to hear and share stories in which we and the land have equal voice.”

Follow this link for the full article and films >>>

Counter Mapping

owlmirror arts

A few months ago I decided to begin putting together an arts blog and online portfolio – I am happy to announce this is now up and running and can be accessed via the ‘Artwork’ tab in the crossbar  above. Also, if you click on the images below they will  take you directly to the relevant articles and pages about the artwork in each image. These range from sculpture and image making, including antler carving, healing tools and ‘power-objects’, to digital and conventional illustration, and mixed media work – there will also be pieces about site specific artwork, a line of healing work that can be both nature and community orientated that I have not documented before and I will be covering some of this particular kind of work here at Owlmirror too. Infact, as well as some of the familiar images already seen at Owlmirror there will be a lot of new work, as it arises, and, some of this will be personal work, as well as including some archive pieces never seen before. Its still in the early stages at this time of writing, but, there are already ten articles and pages to visit and read, looking at many of the above subjects.

Although I have had a conventional arts training, as well as a long apprenticeship in medicine work, these twin rivers have found a deepening confluence in time. Infact, my divining and artwork have always gone hand in hand – much of the creative work I do is commissioned by healers these days, creating a strand of work now going back 20 years or more. I also want to provide a space at the arts site for articles and images touching upon some of the specialist techniques I use – I do a lot of work in antler for example, which ties into the shamanic traditions and carries a very long history amongst indigenous healers. I’ve been lucky enough to be commissioned by people from every continent and from many diverse traditions, including practitioners and teachers from Indonesian Silat and Siberian Buddhist shamanism to European Druids, Taoists and medicine people from Africa and the Americas to the Antipodes. Examples of some of this work will be found at the new site, but, what I really wanted to do is begin talking about the experiences I have in making things. This is an opportunity to look into how these twin paths cross-over and intertwine, especially  where the work is spirit led and belonging to ‘medicine work’, but, also simply exploring the twists and turns in finding a creative path in the world….there’s much to talk about, so watch out for upcoming articles on these subjects and more.

You’ll also find details of how you can contact me – whether its to ask about having something made for yourself or as a gift, or to explore the work and its possibilities at another level, you’ll be most welcome – Owlmirror will be continuing as usual, in the meantime, enjoy the first fruits of the new sister site…..

……in peace, Rob

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