Tom Cowan echoes the tale of the meeting of King Bran of Ireland with Mannan Mac Lir in his retelling of the tale of two Irish hermits.
The first hermit left his lakeside hut early one morning and rowed out into the water in search of fish for breakfast. Perhaps he was reciting a Psalm or two or just rejoicing in the day when he looked up and spotted his neighbor. He had also left his hermitage and was coming towards him. This would not be a problem except for one small thing. The second hermit was not rowing a boat towards his neighbor; he was walking straight across the lake. They met and each regarded the other. The first hermit managed to get his synapses to start firing again and asked “what are you doing out here? The second replied “I need some flowers for my altar. What are you doing trying to row a boat across the meadow?”
The first held up his hook and line and told his neighbor he was fishing for his breakfast. The second pointed to some shrubby flowers along the shore and suggested that the fish might be biting over there. The hungry fisherman caught his breakfast and his neighbor returned dry shod to his chapel with an armful of flowers.
Creation is full of magic. Perhaps sometimes my fish filled lake turns out to be your flower filled meadow. Take the blessing for what it is.
From Yearning for the Wind by Tom Cowan.