Sunday, 17 July 2011

On Rainbow Painted Hill

A partial rainbow hangs over the distant hill. The morning has woken to a cool breeze and a light dampness in the air. Scatters of low grey cloud drift restlessly beneath higher white broken clouds which in places reveal the blue above. I shelter in the lee of elder, hawthorn and ripening wild plums by leaning against my bike and look outwards from my high vantage point over the fields of ripening corn and oilseed rape. The rainbow has now gone, but its memory has painted the landscape. Its strong bold colours that drifted in and out of visibleness in the open space above the land are reflected in the vibrant colours of the flora and crops that drift in and out of season: red poppy, blue borage, purple knapweed, yellow wheat, green pineappleweed, pink mallow, lilac scabious and white chamomile. Today they meet−colours dancing in the breeze.

The oilseed rape is ripening but some crops I've seen are showing significant pod shattering−the result of the long drought of the spring. Later in the day I will pass the first barley fields that have felt the presence of the combine harvester, probably just a few days ago.

I have passed many puddles that hold the result of yesterday's rain and the damp earth and chamomile carpets create a heavy perfume. The verges are full of knapweed, hogweed, clover and an abundance of other plants and flowering grasses. As the fields are preparing for harvest, so Nature is in full swing with flower and seed.

Apart from the occasional crow and skylark there is only the sound of the wind brushing though the hedge and the waving grasses. I feel a sense of waiting; will the gathering clouds bring rain or will they clear to bring sunshine? I think that rain looks likely. On the far eastern horizon I can still see sunlit clouds, but they are disappearing fast. I've left the house and the harshness of the town and become a visitor again amongst those who live out here in the open. I have come to share their day and experience the elements as they do and find freedom and healing for my soul.

I move on, cold from sitting still.