|(Apologies - the pictures aren't very good: it was a very dark morning.)|
A week or two ago, I was walking with Nessie up on the hill. It was not a nice day: it was dull, windy and rain was obviously imminent.
There's a point where you come out from the woods into the open - that's where the lonesome tree is that's in the picture on the right. From here you can turn left, to take the longer walk through another wood, or right, to go straight down the hill, which has the benefit that you're facing wonderful views from Cheddar Gorge on the left, round across the vale of Cheddar, to the reservoir and in the distance the sea and the Quantocks, on the right.
There is another bit which isn't on the way to anywhere, so I don't usually go there. It's a space between two woods, on a downward slope of the hill. I suddenly remembered that some years ago, a fellow walker had shown me a clump of wild daffodils down there, and I decided to go and see if they were still there.
It was much more overgrown than I remembered and I had to be careful not to trip over brambles. But suddenly there they were: fine-leaved, with the flowers bright flecks of gold on the brown hillside. I'd half-expected them to have disappeared, but no, there they were - and what's more, they'd spread: they weren't what you'd call a host, but they were a lot more than a clump.
I've thought about them a lot since. It seems a very trite metaphor to use - but the idea of them there, steadfastly growing and spreading, shining and beautiful - well, wouldn't it be nice to see them as an image of hope? They could be an image of all sorts of other things too, but at the moment, when the domestic and international news seems darker than I can personally remember it being - I think hope will do.
|This was taken on a different day - the darker patch in the middle is Cheddar Gorge.|