Illuminated from within and without

On a hot autumn day I had several work meetings
and at teatime I had a meeting with Warton Crag
wandering through the woods on the limestone pavement.
Dragonflies and butterflies were present
as were leaves falling in the stillness of the soft evening sunshine.

Towards the end I came across a small hawthorn bush
leafless, wordless, emerging from the limestone
covered in thorns and dark red berries
glowing, illuminated from within.
And illuminated from without by the low red sun.

We both stood motionless in this encounter.

In the evening light I moved on from this silent meeting.
I could see the traffic glowing on the distant M6
and in the other direction the sun going down on Morecambe Bay.

Between us all there was a certain unanimity.



It’s usually easier to connect with beauty in the natural world, just as it’s usually easier to connect with our deeper selves in circumstances of peace and quiet. However we may also be able gradually to open to the beauty in all things, even those we have previously dismissed.
This poem, unusually, went through several revisions before ending up in this form. As with all forms, it only tells part of the story, but I hope even so, that it may open a little window for you.

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