Kilmorna House was built in 1801, during the Georgian era for Baroness Katherina of Kilmorna. The house reflects the elegance of that period, with large windows, high ceilings and open fireplaces creating an atmosphere of space and tranquility.
The Georgian era was a time of accomplishment and advancement of the arts. By 1801, Jane Austen had written her much loved novels Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility and Northanger Abbey, which so beautifully portray Georgian society; and William Wordsworth along with Samuel Talyor Coleridge had written Lyrical Ballads, which contributed to the launch of the Romantic Age in English literature.
Not much is known of the mysterious Baroness however she was presumably a woman with an independent spirit. Her name alone appears on the original title deeds of Kilmorna House.
Poetry and prose have been much inspired by the beauty, majesty and power of nature. When we engage with therapeutic and reflective writing, we often find that nature provides us with the language we need to accurately describe our thoughts and feelings.
Flowers have captivated numerous poets. We are all familiar with Wordsworth’s “Daffodils”. His final stanza has always stayed with me :
“For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.”
Roses, my particular favourite flower, have been the subject of a multitude of poems.
Robert Burn’s love was “like a red, red rose, that’s newly sprung in June”; to Emily Brontë, love was “like the wild rose-briar”; John Keats wrote of “the coming musk-rose, full of dewy wine” and Emily Dickinson mused about an unknown rose “nobody knows this little Rose – it might a pilgrim be.” In Edward FitzGerald’s translation of The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam we read “Alas, that Spring should vanish with the Rose! That Youth’s sweet-scented Manuscript should close!” Nature can help us to reflect on our lives and our loves. Our thoughts and feelings can be so touched by a simple, beautiful flower. Writing in the rose garden in Kilmorna gives me a special sense peace, a sense that I hope to share with you.