Very heavy downpours today – more of those April showers in May. I bump into L and do a round with her and Jet taking shelter in the car parked at the top of the zigzag for a while. My intention is to really figure out some alternative mapping today, as the google maps are just not how my perception understands this place. Again my aim is to cover all corners and see them in my mind in graphic form as I walk through the space. The Glen is glistening green and saturated colour, the sky moves from dense pink and grey through white and blue, the rain is loosened in heavy floods and I shelter for a while under the hawthorn by the carved and hollowed Rowan, sharing the moment with some buttercups. It’s more than 10 minutes before I can set out again. I pass the red bench still emitting the glossy odor of its painted coat, its broken plank has been removed and the wrenched bolts are now exposed, gnarled. As I wonder about repairing it I see the concrete block lies in the undergrowth nearby. A rainbow has appeared and strains to be seen against the bruising colours yellowing the deep grey sky
I head on up to the ridge and feel the cleansing of the rain everywhere, the sky has lifted and the Glen breathes cool, replenished, growing.
The path snaking and shining out of the darkness I see someone has set up camp, on the other side a brown tent is nestling into the cliff, I remember I saw and greeted that man yesterday he had a heavy rucksack, a home on his back. I see an arrangement of stones like many cropping up here these days, I like this arrangement in scale and colour, texture and form and think about the stones I’ve picked up here, gnarly quartzes and a few of these small ‘wrapped parcel’ stones that are so typical and often attract me. At ground level I see the activity as grasses and willow herb, wood sage and bramble all make their way into the world in beautiful ensembles. I look down to the line of the hatch and see it echoed on the opposite ridge above by the line of may blossom. The young oak has captured an umbrella, its parabola of polka dots playing havoc with my eyes as it seems to echo across the valley, making contact with that other form glowing white: the L shape of the old gatepost of the Engineer’s House. Now I become aware of a rhythmic gushing from the river and wonder about it. I trip though the Gothic zone, taking the path across the stream by the apple blossom to help me navigate the mud and head downstream to find the source of the beat.
There is a heron here, by a place where something has obstructed the flow and is the cause of the pulse, it’s like the ghostly echo of the old mills.
Homeward bound I pass the other white wall, the place where the midges gather and I’m eaten alive by them, bait, as the bats circle and swoop above, hoovering them up I expect, my blood in midge and now in bat. I try to capture them on video but they are invisible to my camera, there is a clicky jittery sound which may be them.