Sunday, 30 November 2008

Down the road, late afternoon.

The roadsides are like small streams. Mol seems happy to paddle, but we stay out no longer than necessary, and come home to the smells of woodsmoke and chicken stock.

Friday, 28 November 2008

Up the road, early evening, sky.

Veils lift smoking southward, pigeon-blue
and inland appears, flat cut-out layers.
Sunset gashes through just once, bleeds,
and cirrhus blazes a path out north,
toward the dirty pink escarpments there.

Thursday, 27 November 2008

Up the road, afternoon.

We meet the handicapped ladies from Bel Orient, out walking.

" What are you getting for Christmas?" they ask Mol "A collar, a pullover?"

We agree a rainjacket would be handy.

Wednesday, 26 November 2008

Up the road, afternoon, Bel Orient.

How disheveled things look. Some washed-out hydrangeas, a last pink dahlia, the gunnera by the spring collapsing into itself.

A white flash as a rabbit starts up beside the beehives.

Tuesday, 25 November 2008

The old railtrack, Gare de Moncontour, afternoon

The upside-down puddle world, the sunlight out beyond the shadow of the ridge I'm walking on, the pumpkin and chestnut and beetroot soups I'll make tomorrow, all cheer the spirit.

Monday, 24 November 2008

Trédaniel plan d'eau, afternoon

The rain starts as we arrive, only eases as we are leaving, but I enjoy its trembling on the skin of the water, the disappearing sun reflected there in horizontals.

Sunday, 23 November 2008

Up the road, late afternoon

A redwing in the walnut tree, the smell of woodsmoke. A cold northeasterly wind lashed rain down earlier, and will again, but now the light and air are crystal clear.

Saturday, 22 November 2008

The old railtrack, Gare de Moncontour, midday.

I tear the darkened crust off the loaf of bread with chestnut flour I've bought, and chew it as we walk the muddy track until we reach the beech trees.

Friday, 21 November 2008

Up the road, late afternoon

Reacquainting; birch trunks scratched against winterwood, the bent tree form behind the old stone crucifix. Keening lapwings flock up from the brown field, flickering, swirl against the turning lilac sky.

Thursday, 20 November 2008

Down the road, late afternoon.

The freshly ploughed fields are rich and dark and warm as chocolate, with charcoal trees, and some last specks and smudges of gold and russet leaves, green grass, white gulls.

Monday, 10 November 2008

Down the road, late afternoon.

Grey, windy and colourless, prematurely dusk, leaves and birds flit and twitter over the dark brown fields. The crooked chestnut tree on the corner is reduced to an armature again.

Sunday, 9 November 2008

Up the road, afternoon.

I admire the kestrels' skill in hovering in this harsh, cold though southerly wind. Their wild wheeling flight seems exultant, but really it's a hard way to make a living.

Up the road, afternoon (Saturday)

I see two large thrushes duck out of Marcel Pincemin's holly tree, which is covered in clusters of fat red berries. There won't be many of those left for Christmas.

Friday, 7 November 2008

Woods behind Arondel, walking Moos with Mol.

If I were looking at these beech woods from down in the valley, as I often do, I wouldn't know a woman and two dogs were moving beneath their golden skin.

Thursday, 6 November 2008

Water mill, Guettes-es-Lievres, afternoon.

I grew up among beech trees, and they are perhaps my favourites, I miss them rather. But here they are glorious, in russet and gold and reflected in the water.

Wednesday, 5 November 2008

Up the road, afternoon.

The curious, pale, waxy, unidentified fungi with the livid gills are pushing up through the dead grass and leaves in the hedgebanks. They go from convex domes to concave cups.

Tuesday, 4 November 2008

Up the road, late afternoon

The mares have gone from the paddock, and all that remains of the sweet-smelling apples in the orchard is ciderish sour pulp. The countryside is shutting up shop for winter.

Sunday, 2 November 2008

Up the road, afternoon

Chaucer's aging winter sun, turning from gold to 'laitoun', weakened and alloyed, I am uncertain about. Rather its light seems to me more pure, like homeopathic tincture, strengthened by dilution.

Saturday, 1 November 2008

Down the road, late afternoon.

Wet, cold, wet, cold, how do I get thirty words out of that? We run to the bottom of the field and back, duty done. November is itself, for sure.