Saturday, May 16, 2009

They have gone now but cattle have grazed the upper meadow: young bullocks and heifers that nosed their way into every verge and thicket; shorn everything back to expose hedge and tree to their roots. The whole place seems clear and ready to die-back. Along the paths hawthorn berries are already trodden; red skins and ochre flesh pulped against their tanned leaves and pressed into mud. The wind is wet and always - out of the sun - a chill catches hot skin, moist with perspiration. The two lone clusters of fir trees are cleared of tall grass, never usually mown there, and in bas-relief each tree’s bark is rubbed smooth: a spoor to show that they were here.

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