Whilst foraging the very last harvest of the season, paper bags in hand, Raven rambled slowly, in a deliberate leisurely pace to absorb the atmosphere around her, with its earthy notes floating in the air, inhaled through the nostrils of her rather pixie like nose, a nose she has always had such a complex about, though unfounded as everyone thinks she is divinely pretty!
Raven adored this time of year, where all living things on the landscape turn to burnished colour’s and shed ready for dormancy and rebirth; being akin to a Dryad in spirit, (in folklore and Greek mythology – a nymph inhabiting a tree or wood), Raven tended to spend as much time in or around tree’s as she possibly could, at times, when perhaps, she should have been doing other more mundane things!
For Raven, large dense deciduous forests were luckily nearby, giving her the sanctuary she craved.
On this day in particular, she had decided to pop by her favourite Pedunculate Oak, whilst out on her foraging walk, with notebook and pen in her pocket, to gain some inspiration from the nature about her, insights flow easiest when she is near ancient trees, this is partly why she loves them so.
Before she even reached her Oak, she noticed the season changes in the leaves, the personality of the bark, and the ever welcoming face of her tree…yet as she near’s she sees a lighter something through the thinning leaves, intrigued, or rather on alert, Raven headed towards it.
In the crevice of the trunk that had been affected at some stage by canker, Raven sees a deposit, it is decipherable as paper, she inspects it in situ, after all it may be rubbish, or worse.
She notices how it is oddly folded neatly, it is obviously written on the inner folded side, it is particularly carefully placed, to remain, yet neatly, Raven is lured now to pull this paper out.
Raven open’s the paper slowly, carefully, until it is fully unfolded. Her eyes turn quizzical, she looks almost aghast, as she declares aloud, “A list!”, why would someone stick a list in a tree? she pondered to herself.
On the list, was written thus:
Things I Like, To Show You!
- This Oak tree, he is old, wise and beautifully strong.
- (Look down), That is Oak Root Fungus, equally beautiful, one exists off the other, though not entirely making for a happy union.
- (Walk East 3 metres), Have you ever noticed that rock in the incline before? The one covered almost entirely by green moss? If you look and explore closer you will notice it is a capstone from an ancient Portal Tomb!
- (Look upwards), there are the Three Hawthorn Sister’s, they are rumoured to have once been Witches, that were hexed and thus turned into tree’s.
- (To your right), The beautiful, bountiful Elder, bursting full of indigo berries, ripe for picking to make that immune defence Elderberry Syrup…don’t forget to ask her before picking!
- (Walk ahead now) The forest floor denser as you go, the wood sorrel at your feet, and wilted wild garlic still lingers her scent in the air.
- See the artistry of the branches ahead of you now, in the Yew path, I like to sit here, on that branch that swoops down all russet and strangely smooth, like an inviting love seat of nature.
- Here, if you listen very carefully, you can hear water rippling nearby, I like to close my eyes and imagine I am on a Blue Lagoon or sat by a mountain pool, filled by a flowing waterfall, try it!
- You feel relaxed? Let’s journey onwards, to your right again, towards the sounds of water. Aha! You found it, a tiny brook, separating the forest, did you know about it?
- (Look up to the Forests Canopy), Here is where I usually see all the birds in flight or resting atop the trees, in their nests up high, some eating insects attracted to the water, other’s feasting on more substantial offerings from nature, you may even be lucky enough to see the divine display of the Heron in flight, his wings span the greatest width.
- I hope you enjoyed my list, my gift to you, and that you enjoyed this personal journey.