Wednesday, October 12, 2005

A Village of two faces?

I drove through Lymm this afternoon, a posh yet unpretentious place, the product of centuries of growth and decline. So close to Mother Nature, yet so lacking in life. Maybe it was the mist and rain, the damp and cold, the wind and rain, the wet and cold that drove the living into their tomb-like homes. Closed doors, locked doors, curtains drawn to hide from the outside world, like cowards wrapped in comfort, escapees trapped in another jail.

What of the life of those who haunt the fields on this drab, drab day. Excluded from these cells, they walk alone, but in the company of trees, of hedges, of fences which have weathered these extremes. They may be wet but they are warm with the lashing gale on hooded heads, in tune with season, time and age.

The steeple pierces the low-blown clouds, wrapping this Cheshire world in fast-moving grey. The Lymm Damn, that still flat lake protected by its slopes and woods, its surface broken only by the blown leaves and by those still small ducklings rippling like a chain as they race for cover. Dark, black, murky, even haunting is the feel of that spot. As night approaches, there is no good here. Away!

And so as Autumn grows, I ask, “Quiet, empty, still, where are they all, the people of this place, hiding in the remoteness of their homes?” Their trimmed hedges, lawns and borders betray a people chained to garden habits, like robots, automatons in a marble world.

And where is nature? Hiding round the corner? In that field, waiting its chance to return and once again go soft and green? Patient, untidy yet at peace!