The Learn by Tony Halker
Blending reality, history and legend, about a time when women were considered as important as men, taking power in an oral society that worships the Goddess. A whole Celtic Druid world is laid out before us, incorporating beliefs, technology and the natural environment.

A Celtic boy, a beach scavenger, is pledged to the Learn, a life of endurance, a path to become sworn Druid: scholar and warrior. Young women and men progress, becoming Priests and Druidii. Friendship, affection, passion and care develop as novices mature, confidence emerging.
Seasonal battles of winter and summer bring rich festivals when seeds of men are taken by women in pleasure to prove fertility. Small damaged, hurt peoples on the margins of Celtic society blend in and out of vision.

At frontiers with Nature, dependent for everything on what the earth gives or takes, an emotional response to the natural environment defines who people are and the values they live by.
A lyrical novel resonating with modern readers through portrayal of character, language and history; arising from a landscape of today, yet centred in the Celtic Bronze Age of North Wales.
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Page 28 – Owayne, still in awe of the Druid guide he travels with follows that Druid one morning and watches him carry out his ritual practice


He picks up the sword and staff, which he then touches with his lips, and taking one firmly in each hand, he merges into sword trance dance; at one with the spirits of staff and sword as well as the place. Owayne thinks sword and staff have lives, that some spirit is channelled into them; moving so fast that Merle will be cut or killed, at moments he feels he cannot see the sword and at other times that Merle is fighting an unseen spirit enemy or imp sent to test him, to determine whether he is fit to live and to serve.

Stopping abruptly, as quickly as he has begun, Merle sits with crossed legs, fast noisy breath coming and going, placing the sword on his lap and staff on the ground, resting his hands on the sword he becomes stone.



About Tony Halker
Born in London, Tony Halker studied geology at Leeds University after which he worked as a
geologist, travelling extensively overseas. Following an MBA at Cranfield School of Management, he became a manager in hi-tec business and later a businessman and entrepreneur. His writing is inspired by powerful natural landscapes and his interest in the people and technologies emerging from those hard places. His two daughters were born in North Wales. He lives with his wife there and in Hertfordshire.

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