The Marble Shore

“Whoever raises the great stones sinks.” ~ Giorgos Seferis, “Mycenae” Like a river on a map, I trace the sinuous line with my finger as it meanders over the stone. The crystallised vein is rust-orange in a shadowy white expanse. The marble is rougher than I’d imagined, more like a sheet of compressed salt, baked … Continue reading The Marble Shore

Meteora: Stones of the Sky

“We were deeply engaged in this improbable geology.” - Patrick Leigh Fermor, Roumeli I woke early to beat some of the fevered heat of the plains, the kind of humid blaze that leaves you soaked to the skin by mid-morning. The silhouettes of the Meteora were etched faintly against the night sky when a startling … Continue reading Meteora: Stones of the Sky

What the Light Knows

The sky is a harbour all of a sudden. Wherever I look there are wings leaving a wake in the air. Having sailed northwards to reach here, swifts, swallows and housemartins dive through the teeming insect feast laid on for their arrival, swirling through pools of clouded blue. Golden orioles flare from the lakeside willows, brief … Continue reading What the Light Knows

The Stone Coast

For centuries men cloistered here, monastic, remote, alone. Men who’d shed some of the world as a way of contemplating its essence, stricter in their spiritual devotion to it. At the edge of this high mountain lake, they lived lives pared down to clear symmetry, in the way a piece of bone is carved slowly … Continue reading The Stone Coast

In the Eyes of a Bear

For an audio version of 'In the Eyes of a Bear' please press the play button: As the sun rose over the mountains, I walked a treeless ridge that buckled into the hazy distance. A vast summer sky cradled a few threads of cloud and a warm breeze rolled over my shoulders. Skylark song sparkled … Continue reading In the Eyes of a Bear