Since May 1st I have been keeping up with my challenge to write something exactly one hundred words long each day for a hundred days. Sometimes I have to really think about what to write, sometimes it comes to me from goodness knows where, but yesterday I had no problem – I was haunted by something I’d seen, entranced by it and couldn’t get it out of my mind. This is what I wrote
Summer lovely with tumbling white may, with Queen Anne’s lace, cottage gardens spilling over, purple cascades tumbling down limestone walls. Early summer with that soft light casting no shadows, but the nacreous sky a cheerful gentle blue, the clouds pastel daubs above the gentle hills.
The rhynes are still, reflecting light, a swan standing in a meadow scratching its underwing – did it leave the white down I saw floating on duckweed in a ditch?
The landscape, though real, is like an image, cheerful, engaging, flattened somehow but alive.
I want to stop, take a picture, instead I must remember it.
I had dropped my husband off for a gig and was heading back home and decided to take a circuitous route – it wasn’t just that the main roads were crowded with traffic, it was that it was a pleasant and I had nothing much to do. I had left him at the village of Bawdrip, on the south side of the Polden Hills and continued on the road towards Glastonbury but came off and headed north, dropping down onto the flat lands between the hills and another range, the Mendips. I was on a narrow road driving out across this level area and as I described in my 100 words, the white may blossoms were tumbling in profusion from their branches, and elderflower, and in the verges, cow parsley, more prettily named Queen Anne’s lace mounded like snow. The sky was pale and hazy, the colours muted and i could see across the fields, every shade of green, and the odd farmhouse standing as if watching along the road. I’m not describing it very well, but i was like driving through a painting, almost as if I was a ghost or as if i was travelling through a beautiful ghostly landscape.
I want to go back and drive that way again to revisit that entrancing scene, but I’m sure it won’t be the same.