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This report is taken from PN Review 179, Volume 34 Number 3, January - February 2008.

From a Journal R.F. Langley

16 August 1983

Grimspound. Hot brightness, interfered with high up by brief, travelling clouds which cause sudden, fluid alterations to the marbled, smooth curves of the moor, chocolate and sea-green, which, in a moment, turn khaki. They become grim. The hut circles are occupied by children and parents in groups, busy and merrily dressed. Ravens cross the landscape, croaking, then rise and fall in two pairs round the tor to the north. At your feet is the small jewellery, the tor-mentil, the sharp little print done a thousand times. Clouded yellows slip past. Between spoken words you can feel the silence being packed tight by air. Yellow, glowing grass spikes up and jigs above the heather. The Central Waste. Granite. Mica glitters. Lichen scabs. I was here ten years ago, in cold, windy weather, with puddles blown into wrinkles. Today there is the cool, controlled shift of summer wind with a reserve of power pumping confidently in it.

The children play at buying houses in the huts. But it is the Central Waste and does not love money. Earlier, at Upper Bovey, there was monkey flower in the stream and montia sibirica and wet stepping stones over bubbling water. Here shadows seem forced down below your waist and there is no dapple. The bulk of the world protrudes and seems simple, that is unified, and also devoid of wisdom. Whereabouts would one look or listen for wisdom here? There is ...


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