from BARDO

The stars are in our belly; the Milky Way our umbilicus.

Is it a consolation that the stuff of which we’re made

is star-stuff too?

– That wherever you go you can never fully disappear –

dispersal only: carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen.

Tree, rain, coal, glow-worm, horse, gnat, rock.

Roselle Angwin

Friday, 8 June 2012


Lanes deep-littered with leaves, twigs, branches; higher up a tree across the road. The little brook's burble has become a bellow. With all this rain perhaps the aquifers are refilling? In the half-light this patch of wet lichen on rock might be a river delta, aerial view of, in the neolithic, the Fertile Crescent. At half-light last night and again now a young owl yips and squeaks in the valley. On the verge a sparrowhawk lifts off with a young thrush taloned. This year the air's thin of swallows. Verdure peaking and spilling in this strong strange storm – I can feel if not see the extra electromagnetism in our atmosphere present from the eclipse, and everything's charged and heightened. In the neighbouring field the meadowgrass runs like a herd of deer. Here I slip off the known, cast off into wind, take wing.


In town, cup of coffee below the castle with its Norman crenellations. Jackdaw squatting, clinging against the wind to the parapet. A ragged flag. Some tattered plastic Jubilee bunting, a few extra miles of petrochemical rubbish in our landfills. The café's full of single dads with their half-term children. Chatter of sparrows from the ivy colonising the derelict warehouse. In the florists' a huge bearded man delicately manipulates tiny mauve flowers for a bouquet. The flower shop. The fudge shop. The natural face cream shop. Each time my feet take me towards a thought of my mum; each time I have to correct – no, not in there, not now. Walking downhill, bending into the wind.


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