I couldn’t sleep. I lost four hours to dark thoughts.
I thought about camellia flowers to fall asleep.
Barclay Wills describes counting sheep in Shepherds of Sussex thus:
The sheep were allowed to run through a hurdle
two at a time
One-erum, two-erum, cockerum, shu-erum
Wine-berry, wagtail, tarrydiddle, den
- that “den” meaning a score
Now the camellias are flowering.
Virginia Woolf:Let us examine the rose. We have seen it so often flowering in bowls, connected it so often with beauty in its prime, that we have forgotten how it stands, still and steady, throughout an entire afternoon in the earth. It preserves a demeanour of perfect dignity and self-possession.
Camellias do not preserve a demeanour of perfect dignity and self-possession - they’re too good for that. The flowers have too many too-bright, pulpy petals. Too heavy to hold their own heads high.
At home I would collect up the fallen flowers and fill the bathroom with them. The fallen flowers fall apart within a day and I’m left with masses of petals.
Grey is the best colour as it contains all the other colours and is in everything.
"Or is it, that in essence whiteness is not so much a colour as the visible absence of colour, and at the same time the concrete of all colours"
In the time of no aeroplanes, during the eruption of Eyjafjallajökull, I took a walk. The sky was so clear and quiet.
Last weekend I walked up Loughcrew, where 5000 year old tombs sit atop a hill, above those sang a skylark.
WH Hudson on skylarks:
To say of a sound that it is bright is to use a too common metaphor; this sound shines above all others, and the multitude of voices made by one distance is an effulgence and a glory. I have listened to it by the hour, never wearying nor ceasing to wonder at that mysterious beautiful music which could not be called crystalline nor silvery, but was like the heavenly sunshine translated into sound; subtle, insistent, filling the world and the soul, yet always at a vast distance, falling, falling like a lucid rain.
Morgenspaziergang is not a good song for a walk. It is a good song for a psychic walk. Lie indoors with your eyes closed and take a walk around your brain. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZQasAWp8YRs
Another image from the dream.
Photograph taken in a dream.
A swooning, swimming dream on the downs.
I took the 46a bus all the way to Phoenix Park for a long walk. On arrival I wanted only to walk straight back again.
I walked to free my thoughts and unfold my feelings.
I can do that here too, but so far, only moiling walks.
The white cliffs you see in the distance are the Seven Sisters.
Here am I at the foot of the Seven Sisters. Hello and welcome.
The peacock on the left told me that zoology is not pronounced zoo-ology, but rather, zo-ology. Like ‘so’.
I took the top photo a few days after starting work here, October. I emailed the picture to my friends at home: look, I found a lovely tree, I am not so alone.
The bottom photograph I took today, March. The tree surgeons have been busy on campus after last month’s storms.
This tree is 200 years old. Long-tailed tits were busy amongst the logs and branches on the ground.
My heart lives in a sunny, downland field.
This is the daydream I have as I walk home from work:
I see a pub and walk in, it is warm and gold and full of people. I go to the bar, the barman puts a beer down and says "This is for you". I drink it and feel happy.
It feels good to have a daydream that can be realised. My other daydream is about lying in the grass under a blue sky. I have to wait for that one.
CATTERNING To go catterning is to go round begging for apples and beer for a festival on St. Catherine’s Day (25th November).
CLEMMENING Going round from house to house asking for apples and beer for St. Clement’s Day (23rd November).
A Dictionary of Sussex Dialect, Rev. W. D. Parish
"It is good to walk, it is good to lie still; the rain is good and so is the sun"
The South Country Edward Thomas