The end has come quicker than expected, and I am not ready. I feel welded to this changing landscape, cannot tear my eyes from the sea, the sky, the thousand greens of the grass carpeted earth.
Rope, raincoats, boots, sails, tents : things we come into contact with every day. Things that are sturdy. Things that have long lives and short tempers. When it comes to battling with the elements, I am grateful for these things.
The weather changed as quickly as the landscape today:
Passing through each bay we came across heavy rain, into soft mist, into hot sun.
The walk was short and sweet, we are weather beaten, glowing, tired.
A smack of lightening blessed the sleepy sky with energy this morning.
Filling my view, from the top of my vision to the bottom, from sky to sea: the brief, bright crack split the horizon, a slit down from directly above.
The day was damp and all pastel blues, greys and purples. The sharp slit of electricity broke the dull, broke the blur; the land, sky and sea sewn together in this great stitch of light.
The moon is bright, whiter than usual, and full. She feels close, and I feel drawn to look at her, watch her.
Emma said you can't stare at the sea because it is always moving, you can only gaze.
I am moon gazing, night gazing, slowly rotating with the earth, gazing at this moon which is orbiting us on it's elliptical pathway. Gazing at this sky with its celestial bodies, all travelling further and further apart from each other.
Planets follow pathways just as we follow the coast path.
Everything is interwoven on the minutest level, an intricate choreography.
The moon only shows herself in our reflection. The longer I gaze the wider the halo seems to reach, as if the moon is growing in energy. Her edges soften and start to blur, a blue crescent cupping one side.
Sitting on the beach sandflies swarm towards me over the cratered sand, an army of thousands.
They are everywhere- persistent.
Maybe they will strip the skin from my bones, picking them clean, and my skeleton will be left to weather and shrink, molecule by molecule, eroded by the wind and the rain until I come to rest amongst the sand, soothed by the lullaby of the ever present tide.
The field of corn ripples in the breeze, shimmering light travelling quicksilver. A thousand sleek panther shoulders, a swarm of unknown insects racing across the field.
A single butterfly flits through the ears, wings rapidly fluttering.
Today slotted together like a jigsaw puzzle.
Our pace of walking, observations, energy, hunger… it all folded and flowed like the landscape.
Plodding along rolling pathways, chatting with our guest artist Verena; allowing the shape of the day to unfold before us, to form around us, to solidify behind us.
Just after Black Head, between Kennack Sands and Coverack
Spiny ridges rising up from turquoise seas.
I found a rubbery strip of seaweed and bound it, like a leather belt, around the middle of a fist-sized grey-white rock. The rock I balanced upon a stack of slate and grey-white rocks, poised and striking on this flat promenade. A beach, a catwalk for walkers; the strip of sand runs between lake (Loe Bar) and sea on this grey, damp morning. I think briefly about whether or not the lake is salt water before I imagine tasting it and remember that I am parched and that my head is heavy and my feet far away and I must press on.
-Mat later told me he had tasted the water, as we crossed the sand pathway, and that it was fresh, not salty.
Boats bob in the inner harbour, an undulating circular movement, buoys like christmas baubles hung from their sides.
Through the small gateway to the outer harbour I can see waves driving themselves up the high, vertical stone walls, water frothing and jumping at the edges.
Harbours hug villages. They bring them in on themselves.
I've noticed the boats more than ever today.
The short walk has allowed us to slow down and I've seen detail in the harbours that I hadn't acknowledged until now:
The lines across the sand on the sand in Mousehole harbour, the knots in ropes in Newlyn, the bobbing of tiny wooden vessles in Penzance; all of them weathered after years of being bleached in the sun and battered by the sea.
The wooded cove comes as a surprise. We walk through the gate, a portal into a magical woodland world. An earthy tang pervades the air, a rich spiciness.
Dappled sunlight dances all around, a natural disco ball created by the leafy canopy above. It mimics the glinting sea, a verdant underwater grotto.
Midges dance in the dusky light, motes of dust caught in a singular shaft of sunlight. Velvet blankets of moss cover every tree trunk. We follow the brook down to the beach, a mass of smooth rounded pebbles the size of my torso.
The cloud has risen slightly to reveal a multitude of huge red and orange rocks, paused in their decent from land to sea, filling in the liminal space that pairs the two in harmony.
The landscape is littered with tin mines; recent ruins. Striking but crumbling, scattered along the coast.
Between St. Ives and Zennor
The ground is dry and dusty, boulders and huge chunks of rock sticking up at angles out of the ground.
The scrub is abundant, ferns and mosses, creeping vines and low-lying wildflowers, grasses hemming in the narrow trail.
I am covered in tiny, yellowing thunder bugs.
great cavities of crumbling rock
rock with great crumbling cavities
great crumbling cavities of rock
crumbling cavities of great rock
rock crumbling with great cavities
cavities of great rock crumbling
This wilderness. It contrasts with the hustle and bustle of human kind, swarming in St Ives on a warm summers evening
Sitting in the dunes it is very peaceful. A huge swathe of golden sand sweeps out before me, curving around the headlands to my right.
A huge grinning bay, St. Ives on one side and Godrevy Point on the other.
The tide has left its markings along the beach, strands of seaweed and shingle patterned by the currents.
The sun is warm on my back but the breeze is cool enough to make the hairs on my arms stand up. Hairs bleached blonde by the sun.
Two fishing boats are making their way into Hayle, gliding up through the mouth of the estuary.
With the sense of leaving one space behind, in order to arrive eventually at another, is both satisfying and disorientating.
The push from the past and the pull from the future leaves one feeling centred, but this presence is brief; one moment grows into the next as we push on, and time flies.
I can see a face in the rock staring out at the sea. The land itself a ship in a continual voyage towards the ocean, or looking wistfully at the part of itself it has lost, which now stands a separate island on the sand, the gap between them filling and emptying with the tide.
Electric blue sea, solid green grass and the path that runs between:
we trace the line that divides the solid from the liquid.
We rise and fall with the rolling hills:
high on cliffs and low to the beach,
allowing landscape to carry us, to shape our journey
Three miles from Polzeath, we had the pleasure of crossing from Rock to Padstow by boat
The blue bay looked magnificent as we walked up out of Padstow towards our next stop, Stepper Point where NCI (National Coastwatch Institution) keep watch over the boats coming in and out. It was great to hear stories of joy and loss from the local volunteers in the NCI lookout.
We had a long walk over to Porthcothan, but the sun shone for us and we had a warm welcome from lovely Jane Darke, who'll we'll stay with for two nights and whilst she makes a short film, as part of our WONDERLUST journey