Why are there so many songs about rainbows and what’s on the other side?
Rainbows are visions, but only illusions, and rainbows have nothing to hide.
So we’ve been told and some choose to believe it.
I know they’re wrong, wait and see.
Someday we’ll find it, the rainbow connection – the lovers, the dreamers and me…
All of us under it’s spell know that it’s probably magic . ( The Rainbow Connection , by Paul Williams and Kenneth Archer)
Parke Godwin, in his richly textured novel, The Last Rainbow , spins an engaging story around an idea that in its very simplicity goes a long way toward connecting a whole host of legends and myths associated with the misty history of the British Isles. Tales of faerie people, leprechauns, and mysterious spirits that inhabit the night have long been a staple of Celtic mythology . Merlin himself, the quintessential wizard, stands at the apex of many of them, weaving his unique spells and incantations. The Holy Grail commands an entire opus of such tales. But perhaps no single category of stories has captivated human imagination down through the centuries quite as much as that of buried treasures and the haunted curses that protect them.
Barrows and stone circles, eerie cries heard on a night of the full moon, flickering lights seen on distant hilltops and holy places built by human hands as well as the gloomy oak groves preferred by druids of old, merge to weave a spell of mystery that echoes down through the dark corridors of history, forming a mythological tapestry known throughout the world. There are times of the year when spaces between dimensions seem especially diminished, and ears attuned to the clarion call of magic can, it is said, hear forgotten messages floating on wispy currents of wonder.
Might there be, however, a mundane basis for at least some of these fables? Is it possible that at the root of every myth lies a kernel of historical fact? Could it be that mythology is sometimes a shroud which envelopes the work of common, everyday people whose day-to-day activities, unbeknownst to them, were somehow, over time and the inevitable alterations of bards, troubadours, and elder story-tellers, transformed into legends of myth and magic?
For the price of a cup of coffee, you get this and all the other great benefits at Ancient Origins Premium. And – each time you support AO Premium, you support independent thought and writing.
Jim Willis is author of 17 books on religion and spirituality, he has been an ordained minister for over 40 years while working part-time as a carpenter, the host of his own drive-time radio show, an arts council director and adjunct college professor in the fields of World Religions and Instrumental Music. He is author of Savannah: A Bicycle Journey through Space and Time