Got a call from A today to meet up in the Glen. It was a morning with a hard strong frost still cutting a diagonal across the football pitch as the sun reaches for the dog roses.
A and her dog Fudge brought me to a place I don’t remember being before, though I’d heard talk of ‘The Island’ . Over the sluice gate and under the laurels it’s a jungle I’d peered into with [Another A] before but today we stretched our legs over the gap and entered a jungle chamber, the frost was melting from the large leaves and glittering, falling and held in the sunlight throughout the space, the sound of the river rushing by on all sides added to the sense of deep immersion. Two tall Ceders formed an inner portal, slightly skewed and through the gap I see a table, or an alter, the stump of a laurel, and upon its icy surface are some glacial fungi, glowing orange in the jungle light. It was a magical, mysterious experience. The barks of the laurels have letters, mysterious as hieroglyphs, carved and stretched out on them from previous callers, going back in time. There was a high wall on the north bank of the river which could be scaled to exit but we went back via the metal sluice.
We met up with M and her dog all dressed up like a jockey and wandered over towards the Fleischmann place and the Zigzag. We talked about dance and sound and music and places to stop and listen. M showed us a natural ballet barre that had been revealed by ‘P the Wall’s excavations, the root of a tree growing through the wall exactly the right height and girth and behind the wall is the clearly visible platform footprint of the cottage. We wondered how this natural stage would be in the summer growth with clear winter views from the zigzag and all about the wooded grove.
Winter heliotropes and buttercup leaves hold on to the frost, exposing their inner patterns, smashed ice in puddles left exclamation marks from earlier walkers and the frost still holding its pockets amongst the long shadows as I leave a couple of hours beyond midday.