The ‘ink’ was hardly dry on yesterday’s blog when I headed out for my walk and was forced to halt abruptly in the lane as a sharp corner revealed a sizeable flood, in three places, across the stretch of road ahead. The field to the left of my car was completely under water; I had never seen this particular field flood before – and all this in August – but then we had had such heavy rain the day before that it had seemed as though the trapdoor of heaven had slid open and emptied all it had in great vertical rods. In fact, the view from my window had taken me back to all those waterfalls in Wales…I was stood, once more, behind the great Sgwd yr Eira (Snow Falls).
The three rivers that I walk with regularity are the Blackwater, the Whitewater and the Hart and two of those three flood quite often between September and March but I have never known the Hart to break its banks in all my years of walking where I do. Had the Hart broken so much as overspilled? If anything, its waters told me, it had burst out of its limitations, had decided to spread out, to expand; could no longer be contained, was simply longing to amplify its light. I couldn’t help feeling that an overspilling ‘heart’ felt like something to be celebrated, not complained about, as I put my car into ‘first’ and drove slowly through the deluge.
The metaphor of this didn’t escape me, not after all I had just shared about a river driven underground in my earlier blog (this will make much more sense if you read Layers of the Landscape – Part One and the interesting history of the River Fleet; once glistening sacred feminine flow, now underground sewer). The walk that followed was as light-filled as it was wet under foot; all that extra water made everything glisten in the late summer sun.