On writing

Winter's Tales

Trolls in Starlight by John Bauer

Dawn breaks over Nattadon Hill

“Winter then in its early and clear stages, was a purifying engine that ran unhindered over city and country, alerting the stars to sparkle violently and shower their silver light into the arms of bare upreaching trees. It was a mad and beautiful thing that scoured raw the souls of animals and man, driving them before it until they loved to run."  - Mark Helprin (from Winter's Tale)

Like some winter animal the moon licks the salt of your hand,
Yet still your hair foams violet as a lilac tree
From which a small wood-owl calls.
  -  Johannes Bobrowski

It's dark now when I climb up to my studio each morning, and dark again when the work day ends. Coming and going, I hear the owls calling out to me from the shadows of the woods. By dark, the hill is another world altogether. It belongs to them.

The Falling Stars by Catherine Hyde

A Call in the Night by Virginia Lee

Slova Sova by Rima Staines

Images above: "Trolls in the Starlight" by the Swedish illustrator John Bauer (1882-1918); dawn breaking on the hill behind my studio; "The Falling Stars" by Catherine Hyde, in Cornwall; and two owl-women by artists here in Chagford: "A Call in the Night" by Virginia Lee and "Slova Sova" by Rima Staines.