Sunday, 22 June 2014

Landlocked

The warmth of the sun has soaked into the paving stones and I, unshod, absorb its radiance through my soles. As it rises to its zenith, colour is slowly leached from wild grasses, transforming wiry stalks to hay as it shines on down. A splash of crimson from a solitary poppy breaks up the sepia of parched verges, as the haze rises into still air.

On sun baked days such as these, I miss the salt tang of the sea as it rolls relentlessly onto pebbled shores; clattering stones with sonorous sound to lull and soothe the most jumbled of minds. I long for cool breezes to ruffle skin; raising  goosebumps as I settle back into warm pebbled hollows to gaze at the sharp white sails that drift across the horizon.

I am landlocked; anchored by a river, which, although beautiful in its own way, cannot compete with the great expanse of sea. It ebbs and flows with the tide, creeping to cover rivulets of exposed mud , genteel in its flowing, with none of the wild ferocity the sea brings; the rolling surf, white water waves and taste of salt on sun warmed skin...My feet follow tarmac paths, edged with graffiti and the washed up detritus from passing vessels. Once they balanced down tracks carved from crumbling cliffs, onto shingle that slipped and sighed past beach huts weathered by a thousand storms.

For now, the river will suffice, but soon I shall turn my face south and head for the beach once more.




Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Many a slip.....


I was a clumsy child, all bumps, bruises and grazed knees. Awkward in dresses; arms, legs and hair awry, I hurtled through my childhood in a series of scrapes and broken bones.
My mother took us to ballet lessons; but pigeon toed and lacking in grace I preferred to climb trees, skateboard down the hill behind the house or cycle to the beach to jump the waves. I broke branches, wrists and my teeth in the slips and tumbles I took; layering cuts upon bruises and gaining the occasional scar.

Now I find myself slipping on the sixth stair, layering bruises once more. My mornings bring stiff jointed Dutch doll legs, swollen knuckles and slow reflexes that cause me to stumble and slip as I grasp the bannister to steady my descent. My ankles, unyielding, sabotage what little grace I have, as I trip up steps ; stubbing toes, blunting  pride and leading to painful interludes.
My bone scan says arthritis... But I wonder if the CT scan will reveal 100% clumsy written large through to my very core



Thursday, 12 June 2014

Suspended animation

Slowly the silken skeins of spider webs spread from shuttered windows....and on to cling to the corners of picture frames. Delicate in the still air they festoon white walls with desiccated carcasses of long digested flies.
Since our hasty departure, the house has sunk into weary resignation; like Miss Havisham before a decaying wedding breakfast. Cats pad on soft paws, commandeering cushions, shedding fine fur across  bedspreads and carpet corners; to add to the thin layer of dust, stirred by feet to settle in whorls upon the carpet.
A listless ennui has crept up on us; the flurry of painting and cleaning a distant memory as another month ticks past, bringing no respite from this waiting game. Like Vladimir and Estragon we are paralysed; destined to forever wait for a redemption that never comes.






Tuesday, 3 June 2014

Bees

In our garden we have planted flowers, sweet scented, radiant with colour, to tempt bees to come savour the nectar.......



As a child I would watch enthralled whilst small furry bodies balanced on spindle legs, clutched and clung to the most delicate of petals, as they flitted from bloom to bloom.

Bees; swift, soft, oblivious to  my presence, buzzing in and out of woodland flowers; disappearing into the speckled trumpets of foxgloves to emerge moments later, legs powdered with pollen. Sometimes I would stretch out small fingers, sliding them slowly into the silky blooms, trying to feel what it could be like to crawl inside each inviting flower.

In my Godmother's orchard there were bees a plenty, dancing amongst the daffodils on warm Spring days; landing briefly on ancient white wood hives, long since abandoned; before spiralling up through mossed apple trees and away into bright blue skies.

By Summer's end we would find them drunk on nectar, too sated to fly; clutching at grass stems in an effort to launch themselves into the air . Many a bee has been lovingly scooped up on a fresh picked leaf, and gently placed on a window ledge to sleep off their excess before taking to the skies once more.

So now, we plant sweet smelling flowers and wait for the bees to come......