Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Early morning....

I was out early again this morning, setting off in inky darkness and wrapped up to the hilt to shield myself from what looked like a freezing start. It is the end of January and noticeable that the light is returning. It is the light that turns the countryside into a great work of art - the natural tool to give landscape its depth - establishing foreground and distance - and accentuating the geometry imposed by cultivation. And, because all of this is in a state of perpetual flux the masterpiece is never quite finished - never quite the same. Rivers and streams are animated by the coming and going of light, the water sparkles or appears dense and mysterious. Each shaft of light catches a different detail, each dawn illuminates an otherwise hidden beauty.

As I ride the gloomy greyness is pierced by a spear of glowing gold light, the morning mist flows like a stream in the air, there are a thousand dew covered spiders webs and a jumble of warbled notes tumble down through the bare branches. The land seems strangely still. There is a sultriness that lies over everything. As the light gets stronger I notice the grass in pastures looks thick and rich with an almost spring greeness and the trees stand proud with a delicacy of colour against the light grey sky; fresh skeleton shapes of black, red, grey and the softest brown. The land seems in suspense now. Nothing is happening, but it as though something is about to happen. There is suspense and mystery and expectation. there is no sound, no wind, no rain, and the light grows ever stronger. I pause to take a photograph on my phone - the tree trunks look blurred and seem to bleed into the background like a wet painting. It is a beautiful view of a new day beginning and I feel warm and content despite the cold.

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