Wednesday 16 January 2013

crusted, rusted, frosted and dusted

The Frost performs it's secret ministry
Unhelped by any wind....
Rust is ripeness, rust.
At the very bottom of Dangerfield, where the slope melts into the shadowy wooded copse...over my shoulder the red tiled hat of the Lane with it's chimney stack poking smartly skywards.
Makes the corners of my blue lips turn up when I see it perched up there.
The frozen tufts and the shivering oak at the top of the hill.
Behind the Cowshed, old junkery looks patinated and beautiful in its crusted finery.
A wreath of barbed wire takes my breath.
Anyone fancy a go at this wiry cat's cradle?
The bracken in the field margins, all crusted, rusted, frosted and dusted.


Wednesday 9 January 2013

Having the right "Gratitude"

January ~ a New Year stretched out ahead, 365 unwritten days.
A year like a new diary, crisp and clean and waiting to be filled. I hope to make it a good one...I have a plan! Well not exactly a plan, more a word.
(n) Encouraging people to see common things as strange, wild or unfamiliar; defamiliarising what is known in order to know it differently or more deeply.
I have been very taken by the greeness of everything, all this rain seems to have clarified the countryside around the Lane. All is verdant and luminous with raindrops and, amongst all this vert...purple! Yes, the more I wonder at the moss and the jade and the pine and the bay the more I see purple on the backs of leaves, in the shadows of the grass, in the tree trunks, in the dark shady corners of the barn, in the muddy scars on the landscape. Perhaps I have developed "Hockney" coloured spectacles?
Back to Ostranenie ~ yes! I love the idea of  looking at something familiar with a new perspective, to experience the sensation of something, not simply accept the familiar. Samuel Taylor Coleridge expressed it beautifully in his Biographia Literaria...
"To carry on the feelings of childhood into the powers of manhood; to combine the child's sense of wonder and novelty with the appearances which every day for perhaps 40 years had rendered familiar....this is the character and privilege of genius"
Perhaps I will apply this approach to familiar people too...although it is always harder to regard those we know intimately with a freshers eyes, all the history and emotion that flows between us is hard to ignore. Although, I confess, when I try to remember my very first impressions of Mr. Lane I find myself drowning in feelings and transported to the foreign shores where we first encountered one another. There were seven of us that met and I suspect we each would tell a very different story about what we saw and felt and thought...four of the seven are still significantly in my life, I am married to one, another is married to my dearest friend and we are Godparents to the child of another...the last is my Crepe Suzette, we are peas...
I appreciate Jonathan Carroll
" One of the saddest realities is most people never know when their lives have reached the summit. Only after it is over and we have some kind of perspective do we realise how good we had it a day, a month, five years ago. The walk together in the December snow, the phone call that changed everything, that lovely evening in the bar by the Aegean. Back then you thought "this is so nice." Only later did you realise it was the rarest bliss."
So, I intend to capture "the rarest bliss". I saw this lovely idea on Pia Jane Bijkerk's FB page.
A gratitude jar
An empty jar to fill with little notes about the good things that happen this year..something to look back on at the end of the year...perhaps...I shall begin with a note about the purple backed ivy leaf I keep seeing as I walk past the gate...
Why the jasmine on the windowsill? Because Little Brother Faraway has a yard that tumbles with jasmine, for me it is the smell of Melbourne. All cities have smells don't you think? We are closer because of the jasmine...

Tuesday 1 January 2013

Here it is!

Remember, the time of year
when the future appears
like a blank sheet of paper
a clean calendar, a new chance.
On thick white snow

You vow fresh footprints
then watch them go
with the wind's hearty gust.
Fill your glass. Here's tae us. Promises
made to be broken, made to last
Jackie Kay

Happy New Year!