Today, I’m sitting in my favourite armchair, my face glows with warmth and my ears are soothed by a harbinger gust, old as time itself. Occasionally I reach forward to stoke the fire which releases shadows and scatters sepia tones across pine clad walls. My mind turns over like tumbling leaves, restless yet content, seeing splashes of colour in fading light.
A flock of swans fly overhead; I smile easily at their distinctive hollow wing beat.
In the past, I may have sprinted to the opposite window to watch their retreat over the lake. Now I am content to walk through my imagination, wondering about their ungainliness when setting down on water, before transforming into floating islands of serene beauty.
In childhood all is possible, days are elastic, focus is all encompassing and the Universe exists in the heart of a buttercup.
Around seven years old and beginning to establish a sense of self, I was happiest exploring woodland around my home in Scotland. Each Season was distinctive, carefully pressed for all eternity in a sacred book sealed by nature. Snowdrops bravely endured winter, determined to seek the light, wrenching themselves free from the darkness which marked their struggle. Primroses clustered on embankments, together they symbolised strength in the collective. Bluebells cast an evocative perfume in May, an inquisitive child wandered amongst their apparently chaotic residence, while lofty oaks remained imperious to all who passed beneath their great boughs.
Summer time was easy living. The sweet scent of hay filled my lungs and playing hide and seek, I naively wondered why I was never found; the seekers gave up too soon and I remained waiting to be found until my Mother called me to tea.
Extracts from my poem “The Snowdrop”
Roses and Lillies
are long gone.
Sybarite’s Summer song.
Autumn leaves a void in the lives of many. While the scents of cinnamon and ginger, melting toffee, tactile qualities of woollen clothing and hearth and home are highlights for many, suffering is evident when we cling to something that can’t be experienced twice. An Autumn leaf cannot return to its greenness, its mortal quest is ended when it touches the forest floor. Adults cannot fit their life experiences and pain of loss into the brightly packaged container of childhood.
However, faith is found in the unseen. What exciting possibilities will rebirth bring? Once awake, there is no time to slumber. The hope that resides in the soul is that a single moment on Earth may leave a trace of our existence for others to learn on their journey.
Swans cross the sky.
Spring resurrects flight.
Sun recalls the snowdrop.
Tiny essence of light.
The fire has grown cold, and I unhook my winter coat and venture outside to gather logs. There is a nip in the air and Scottish winters can be unforgiving. The menthol air refreshes me, and I look around. Three deer forage among the leaves, one raises its head and stares inquisitively at me.