She gave us another creative writing exercise to complete: describe the night, apply images, and use detailed observation. Then, lightly, in a voice tinged with an affable threat, the teacher added these words: ‘and, whatever you do, leave the moon alone, it has suffered enough.’ She’s right. It’s hard to describe the moon without falling … Continue reading Moon
In Edinburgh, we have gained 50 seconds more light today compared with yesterday. Tomorrow, a further 58 seconds will be added to the bag, over a minute the following day, and by New Year’s Eve we’ll have a whole six minutes more of daylight than we had on the shortest day a week ago. Not … Continue reading Tender Is The Night
Back in Edinburgh, I know someone who is partial to a little sculptural clipping in his garden. You know the sort of thing: clipping the privet into gently undulating waves, softening the usual straight lines and sharp angles of hedges and herbaceous borders. When I lived in York, in the North of England, the university … Continue reading Mother Earth
If ever I was out walking with my dad on a clear night - maybe up along the Black Path in Portrush or along the beach at low tide in winter, before they installed the lights on the promenade – we would look up into the Van Gogh night and cast our eyes to the … Continue reading What Is The Stars?
K. has a little poster in her room, stuck up above the desk where she does her homework, that reads: “A smooth sea never made a skilful sailor.” She’s only 12, it seems like a hard lesson for one so young to learn. I hope it is many years before she has to leave the … Continue reading Swimming With Sharks
I had brunch with my lovely niece on New Year’s Eve and, inevitably, the talk turned to New Year’s resolutions. We composed our lists independently of each other and then shared what we wanted of them. It turned out we had a few that were the same – one being to go to bed earlier … Continue reading Sensible
P. and E. hosted dinner in a city centre restaurant last night - right in the heart of Edinburgh. We were a party of about a dozen; of all ages, connected by blood and friendship. “Don’t we scrub up well?” E. declared, surveying the table. It was a night for best Indian shot silk, velvet … Continue reading Love Affair
We are all pieces of a jigsaw and without each other there is no full picture, no complete life, just fragments. I was reminded of this when I was talking to R. on the phone a few weeks back and we were sharing stories about H. who had just died. We each talked about how … Continue reading Jigsaw