It's not often we have a day out just for the sheer pleasure of doing so, usually there is some kind of plan, some mission, some chore that drags us out of our comfy home and we make a day out of it. We turn the mundane into the magical by way of our attitude. The most basic of shopping trips can be turned into a day out by the addition of a little detour, a flask of coffee and a few sandwiches. But last week we made an exception. We planned a day out just for ourselves, no little jobs, no errands, no shopping, no chores. And it was long overdue.
For a long time now we have been planning to visit Wistman's Wood on Dartmoor. We'd seen pictures of it, we'd even seen it on T.V but for some reason we had never managed to visit. Last Thursday we changed that.
On the way we stopped off in Tavistock, a lovely market town, and there I lost my heart to a woman of such devastating beauty I didn't know if I should laugh or cry. She took my breath away. Her skin glowed with a milky luminescence and her soft hair tumbled over her shoulders to her rounded breasts. She was demure and sweet and yet the flowers in her hair spoke of a wildness and a passion that stired up my soul and stole my heart.
By the way, did I mention she was a painting? I don't want anyone thinking I'm having adulterous thoughts about any woman but the one I'm married to! My lovely wife was just as smitten with her as I was. To me she was the most perfect representation of the Goddess that I have ever had the honour to behold. She was painted by an artist named Lee Woods and, so I'm told, was painted to suit the stunning gilt frame he found in a flea market. They are indeed a perfect match and having looked at some of his other work on the internet, she was something of a departure from his usual style.
Never before have I been so moved by a piece of art and I felt a physical pain when I had to drag myself away.
But drag myself away I did and we eventually made it up to the moors. We took it slowly, to ease my aching back, knees, hip... and also to allow ourselves the time to simply drink in the wonder of the wild landscape. It was a grey day, but mild and the rain held off much to my relief and my wife's disapointment. I love my insane little Witch but I draw the line at trudging across the moors in a downpour.
I often struggle with walking, especially in the damp, but My Goddess it was worth the walk! A more magical, sacred place I have never seen. The calm I felt beneath the stunted oaks was beyond compare. I truely felt a part of the wood, a connection with my brother Druids from ages past. The raw energy of that place seeped into my weary bones and gave me a spring in my step I haven't felt in many a year.
We ate our meal beneath the trees, sheltered from the wind by the mighty strength of a great overhanging boulder and we walked amongst the oaks, marveling at the tenacity of these trees to survive in such a landscape. With great boulders littering the ground like remnants from some long forgotten game of giant marbles, the shapes now blurred by moss and litchens; the trees too wearing great cloaks of green across their trunks and branches. It is a truely etherial place and one that has taught me much, about clinging to life in the face of adversity, about the dependancy of the small on the mighty, about the true beauty of wilderness and hope in the dark.