“Borrowdale 4 Oct 1806 – Dark Autumnal day at noon –
tone more than this…the effect exceeding terrific”.
Scafell rises with its gleaming crag-face
from a huddle of sodden black
in wetness, darkness, silence.
Stone precedes and supercedes
all human endeavours, or their lack.
Struggling for light among the mountains
he used pen and paper to keep track.
Notes were his memory, his almanac.
They served as a mood-chart,
a companion that re-claimed his spirit
from the clench of rock. Words fixed
each encounter in its particular spot:
signs of patient surrender, or sudden shock.