Monthly Archives: February 2011

once upon a time on the edge of the world

cartographer imaginaire

Today I drew you in the sand.
For days on end, rain filled gulleys, drones, reservoirs, lochs and lochans – waterlogged layers of peatlands, that act like thick blotting paper. For nights on end, I dreamt of each rock in the sand – bouquets of kelp washed on the shore, your every contour, round and round… For the first time in a fortnight, a starry night on Wednesday night! An orange sunrise on Friday overrode grey and dark jade sea.

I nearly lost sight of the island in Panavision.

And when I try to pin blueness, I need to return to the edge; listen to rollers on both sides, as I wander in morning sun. Light, light blessed again my dear sand bridge and let me reach to Arcania. 

My travelogue in island blue begins again.

The incessant song of the sea; rollers behave like bulldozers in surround sound! Spray sticks to everything that stands at surf level. Two hooded crows squabble for kelp; shalders (oystercatchers) shriek back in nearby fields, craigs (rocks in the foreground) and splashzone. Every rock shines and weighs its gold. I feel Tom Thumb returning home… Nothing else matters.

Here lies our wealth, light years away from the void created by the artificial world. I recall Kenneth White sketching a  a destination-less journey, in which the term adventure takes all its dimension. Such simple act of wandering without a goal rekindles our spirit of communion with the world. Moments of sheer joy, as our senses awake to the magic of the island, filled eyes and heart. We are at one with the cosmos.

Soon, we shall cross the equinox, welcome equality in night and day… And before long, re-dress ourselves in this mighty boreal blue.

Haiku triptych de saison

world sketcher –
ragged contours in thick black lines
sometimes distracted by a gale.

Fleur d’oranger –
February drowned inside rain,
indigo month swept by a gale. Here comes the sun.

World poetics –
no matter who lit the first match, as shores expand,
it all sparked off somebody’s mind.

© Nat Hall 2011


Filed under 60N, Arcania, atlantic, colours, earth, geopoetics, home, ninian, north, shore, winter, world


Gardens never (fully) sleep

So I was told a good couple of years down the line.
Lines – Meridians, Longitudes – the very work of clockmakers, poets, dreamers and mathematicians! Lines, lifelines, as if our love of the world and music was bound to more than words, chords, and chorus – a poetics that shouts across the universe and finds its roots deep inside Earth, where we, creators of one kind, weave threads of life just like cobwebs, on which spiders record lifetimes… 

Today, one of us three, decided to play in the garden by dressing “Night” with grace.  

Garden2Garden‘s Pianist & female lead vocal, Lissa-Kathe,  adorned our shared creative space with this video, which, I hope, will reach out to you. As for the vast majority of Garden2Garden‘s world, “Night” was born off a poem I wrote and shared with my two fellow “gardeners back in 2007. In turn, David and Lissa adopted it as “untouched” lyrics for the purpose of the song.”Night” is very close to my heart, as well as to Lissa’s. However, Lissa’s choice of cinematography The Secret of Moonacre fits the song just like a velvet glove.

For more details on Lissa’s work as a solo artist, please click on the following link:
Our shared project, Garden2Garden, can also be found at: Garden2Garden
All songs are available in iTunes as digital tracks, as well as on CD Baby should you wish to acquire a “physical” copy of Airborne, Garden2Garden’s debut album.
Our garden is nurtured. May the cosmos shine within it!


Filed under 60N, celebration, garden2garden, geopoetics, project, world

world mapper

in between storms

I never know what to expect from February. I spend most days mapping the world through blotched windows… Sometimes the pane bends to the gale, as double-glazed world will not yield – sometimes it’s still trying to snow.

My pocket shock/water/dust/freeze proof camera records images from the island through a myriad of raindrops or just salt glued to the glass pane, as I come and go along the A970 every morning and afternoon.

Some mornings look so promising. The island bathes in a blue that may feel cold…. The coldest month of the year on this 60th Parallel unveils islands from our near shore with rage and grace. And as I rove towards middle of afternoon, Father Sky may not match my desire and sometimes offers a spectacle of eerie tones across the sky and shadow land. 

Either way, I’m left to imagine the very edge of my boreal waterworld. 

I love narrow land points. Quarff is one of them. This settlement located on an isthmus reminds me how close we can flirt with both Atlantic and North Sea. Only a spoonful of kilometers separates my eyes from their shores… It is said that the Viking world made excellent use of an isthmus in order to avoid circumnavigation. The boys were practical.

At the moment, Quarff offers storm colours. Spindrift flies so high, salt invades gardens and windows… Starlings, Jenny Wrens and Robins need to shelter inside the greyness of stone walls to avoid to be cured alive or end up on alien land. Last week alone, the island broke gusts’ records with speed reaching up to 104 mph (167 km/h). Ruffling thought! That’s when roof tiles begin to dance and and floorboards whistle like kettles.  

Feeling the edge
Closer to home lies a massive tongue of land. Today, my world tumbled in this gigantic washing machine on my way to Lerwick. South Easterlies were still steering massive rollers towards the shore and da shoormal was clad in lace. Our lifeline with Scottish mainland remained moored for at least three days. Fresh fruit and veg become treasures and we make-do with what we have. We hide our fears in tussock grass and trust embers from the fire.
To stand along its raging edge re-instates you within the vastness of the world and reminds you how elements determine contours in your life. 

chart of the universe
I quite like the comfort of my bus, where I imagine a chart of the entire universe as I look up at my window. A flood may slide against the pane, I see galaxies through raindrops. I share the dreams & pounding heart of the cartographer, as I walk the shore against all odds. As weeks vanish at speed of gales, we are nearing to equinox.
Cycles of seasons as we rotate around a star,
….Copernicus was a genius!


Filed under 60N, Arcania, colours, earth, geopoetics, home, images, writing