An impromptu, innocent and gentle crepuscular walk in the grounds of Trelissick turns into an unexpected action movie plot point: a monstrous kraken hauls itself from the mire and lumbers, clicking and creaking and groaning, fingers its way across the sward … and we run … and I tip my camera over my shoulder in the hope of … and we are free … well, derrr …
And then today I was wandering across the apocalytic wastes around Geevor and was reminded of the obsessively claustral, sepulchral aesthetic of the geological vampires of our recent past.
Friends who’ve come here say: it’s not pretty — no; it’s so frighteningly, dangerously hard — yes; it doesn’t let you forget, does it — no; but it still slips its mineral veins deep into your soul like brittle mycelium — oh yes.
And wherever you go, the Bucca are watching …
You can fly to the furthest reaches of the globe and fuck the future of our world, and ignore the politics and the ecology and the economics and … and gawp at the natural wonders of the world and tick off your bucket list scores or you can look around yourself, here and now, orient yourself and choose to belong and see the beauty and the depth and the magic of the place where you stand … and …
cobble together a collage of 6 photos and try to say something about us, people, and the earth, and about the sea and history and hardship and pain and about home.
Asleep at the helm … a not-so-subtle Brexit reference … the wreck of the RMS Mulheim which ran aground in Gamper Bay near Lands’ End in 2003, when the chief officer tripped, fell, banged his head and passed out. She was eventually broken up and thrust into Castle Zawn where she remains.
A particularly dull photograph of the Long Ships Lighthouse on Carn Bras off Land’s End. That is … until you look at it full size and see the Scillies on the horizon. A full 28 miles away but clear as day … never had such visibility here.
Enys Dodnan … home of the handsome, fearsome black-backed gulls.
Slit arch at Nanjizal Cove.
Beautiful, filthy waterfall on to the beach.
On the inland route back to Sennen we foraged for deliciously ripe sloes, filling our empty lunch box with future christmas cheer. The fennel vodka is already maturing … nom nom nom.
Incredibly intense cornflower blue … cornflowers at the side of the path, Centaurea cyanus.
And eventually, safe back in harbour … long before sunset for once.
Just wandered out to get an image I needed of the sky and found the buddleja covered in butterflies, including this beautiful Painted Lady, Vanessa cardui. I didn’t know they were migrants too. Along with the geese and the cuckoos and the robins and the starlings and the …
I’ve got a horrible feeling that if we ever did stop all freedom of movement we’d die of lonely silent hungry thirsty brain-dead BOREDOM.
One of a few Rose Chafers we saw patrolling the brambles, beautiful jewel-like scarabs (their vivid green produced structurally by left-circularly-polarised light rather than pigment, he said), Cetonia aurata, on the cliffs between Cape Cornwall and Sennen Cove.
There were clouds of butterflies in the fields behind the cliffs but the only one who was vain enough to pose for long was a male Gatekeeper, Pyronia tithonus.
And a herd of magnificent time-slipped English Longhorns.
Filling the sky in the south and east … can feel it coming — a heavy blast of hot humid air blowing before it. Apparently it’s not going to be too bad, just very wet but we’re a little exposed up here and they always makes us anxious. I suppose we could all do with the water but … and but — dribs and drabs would be so dull, damp and English
Leccy off in the studio this evening I think.
Beauty and the Beast.
The dipsacus all over the farm are all doing their beautifully raggedy rising tide flowering at the moment.
But beware those thorns — they’re lethal.
This year will definitely go down as … winter, spring and summer — feels like half the year has been shrouded, occulted, drained and drowned in fog.
Here condensing in jewels, as is its wont, on an alchemilla mollis in the yard.
Is that a colour combo to die for or what? Furtive little nasturtium weaving its way through the herbs.
Humans are uniquely crap — unique in the natural world — we alone deplete our habitats to the point of our own destruction … errr … or not.
This week’s high point was Penhale Point looking at the uniquely-named Gull Rocks … errr … or not. I have noticed a certain lack of imagination or perhaps just a plain literalness in Cornish nomenclature.
One of the many beautiful engineering installations in and around the army camp.
Purposeful, beautiful and Brutalist. Bond villain lair cum power station. I could live there.
Looking back, North East, to Trevose Head.
The wild thyme was covered in hundreds of gorgeous cinnabar moths … which are not as easy to catch on camera as you might think.
Their stunning yellow and black hooped caterpillars infest ragwort — I remember them from childhood summers in Wales — and infest is the word — to such an extent that few survive to adulthood as they rapidly exhaust their food supply and resort to cannibalism. Charming.
How quaintly human of them.
So we’re not unique after all? I’m shocked. We’re as natural as cancer.