Thursday, 30 September 2010

Derwent Dams

Here are some wonderful photos and prose from Helen, her first contribution to the blog. Welcome Helen!

The shower broke, a plumber was called – ‘3 November is the soonest I can come’…….’did I give you a date? Sorry can’t make the 3rd, next week looks better, ok the 9th’

The 9th dawned; thick fog, dismal, gloomy. The prospect of heading for the hills was unappealing but the plumber needed a dog free environment.

The higher I drove, the clearer it became until I emerged into the most perfect autumn day!

The air was pure

I wanted to fill my lungs

I greedily inhaled and felt the cleansing effect course through my veins

I wallowed in selfish solitude but wanted to share the experience

The beauty I could see

The freshness of the pine resin I could smell and taste

The all consuming silence I could hear; and

The springy earth I could feel

The calmness of the day gently warmed by the distant sun was reflected in the mirror surface of the untroubled water of the dams and I began to reflect on the blood, sweat and tears lost in the creation of this incredible feat of engineering, the loss and sacrifice of the former residents whose village was laid to rest in the hidden depths of the flooded valley, the provision of water that is taken for granted by those supplied by the dams and the almost guilty pleasure that this day had given me

Derwent Dams
Derbyshire Peak District

When I returned home, the water of the dams was again flowing through my repaired shower!


Sunday, 26 September 2010

Long Meg and her Daughters

Saturday was a beautiful autumnal day crossing the Pennines across high moors via the cobbled streets of Alston and the impressive Hartside Pass to visit Long Meg and her Daughters (this link has Wordsworth's thoughts about the circle)

The Lake District from the top of Hartside Pass. I love the fading colours.

Long Meg watching over the circle, oh yes and the cows. These pilgrims paid their respects and left. leaving a stillness, a peace, no human sound, a panoramic sky, the evidence of our ancestors and a buzz in the centre that would not be denied.

Long Meg, silvery lichen highlighting the stern planes and etching the wrinkles of her timeless face.

One of the spiral markings on her side.

More photos to be seen here , ironically we used sat-nav to get to this amazing ancient place, the co-ordinates are NY571372 !


Mood: Connected!

Thursday, 23 September 2010

The Green Man's Autumn Equinox greetings

This amazing sculpture is deep in Hamsterley Forest, one of my favourite haunts, it is place of beauty, peace, wild spaces and provides wonderful walking meditation for me. I wrote the poem a few years ago now but it still reflects how I feel about walking in nature - although, these days, with more creaks and groans from both me and the forest I think.


The physicality of motion
Hips harmonically playing
Striding stretching, bending
Feeling every muscle working

The sensuality of action
Skin glowing, sliding, heart pumping
Optimum function, oxygen flooding
Pleasure centre responding

The practicality of reaction
Through thought, muscle patterning
Feet, legs, body, head all following
Mind appears aimless, meandering

The freedom of distraction
Unconsciously sorting, clearing, storing
Shoulders relaxing back straightening
Peace, balance, tranquillity affirming

The release of emotion,
Earthy walking potion
Body, soul unification
Sanctified inspiration 

I'm hoping to go and see Long Meg and her Daughters at the weekend, so watch this space!


Thursday, 16 September 2010

A reminder that here the autumn equinox is a week away, enjoy the turn of the seasons!

Harvest Home

Autumn Equinox, Harvest Home, Mabon, or simply
this wild season of winds and gathering for the days ahead,
this time of changing colours and  low late summer sunlight,
this time of preparation, of clearing and sorting, of equal day and night.

Breathe in this deepening light, the summer work is done,
the winter's tasks ahead, dance, sing, feast and play,
reflect on all that's past and plan your winter crafts
treasure the Harvest Moon, tend the home fires, honour the Green Man

The Wheel turns on with wisedom, healing and rest.

As some of you will be aware, I became "blog mistress" last Samhain and Sally has proved a hard act to follow! If any contributors would be interested in taking on this interesting task for the next Celtic Year it would be great to hear from you! e-mail me at  also I'd be very interested to hear your views about the blog, whether we should continue into year 3, how it could develop, oh and, of course, to send your contributions. These could be photos, crafts, painting, writing, music, videos.....don't worry about the Celtic connection - it is worldwide and in our very bones.

Greens, browns, reds, orange and yellows!


Friday, 3 September 2010

Harvest Time

Another month has passed and we can now feel the hints of Autumn in the air, summer has been such a busy and happy time, so apologies for the lateness of this post.
Since Lammas I've been watching the changing landscape and the greening of the cut hayfields. I wanted to share with you this painting and poem, written for my lovely young friend to remind her of summer.

Magic Meadow
Under summer evening sun in the time after haymaking,
Climbing from greening fields she reached the fairy mound
then sat serenely amongst fantastic flowers.
She connected with black cat who watched
Brownie as he tumbled and laughed.
All silently seen by Heron.
Each at ease in a magic meadow spilt from nature’s book.

and some detail

Enjoy this turning of the seasons, it is less than three weeks until the Autumn Equinox, already my blueberry bushes are changing into their reds and golds and I'm looking forward to more amazing colours from nature.