Aroma is everywhere, a beckoning air scented
with a matrix of blends, he searches
in the bogs where the pheromones are strong, the pull of the air
sweetened by sea, he searches
in the density and clothness of peat
in its settling the damp seasons into memory, he searches
in the tracks of ancient wanderers, heroic seekers
in the meadows rills sundews and cotton-grass
as the larks spiral their notes on the pulsatile shore, searching:
in the bog the pheromones are strong,
buttercups and glinty tormentil spray fragments of sun
for the dung brown butterflies.
But the cutters have been there.
The wet slap of westerlies moulds these landshapes,
their folds and rises, falls and hollows smothered
by bristly heather brushforms;
through a nettling net of midges he searches
where the pheromones are strong and the cows still absent.
The cutters have been there with their sweat-heavy spades –
Sholto crashes into the hole, a mattress of tweedy peat
trapped despite the bulge and heft
of struggling muscle,
waits, listens to the smoothing whispers
of the tannin-stained sleepers in the bogs, lost bodies
waiting for rescue.
Chan eil saoi air nach laigh leòn
Even a hero can suffer injury
(Sholto the Shorthorn bull was rescued by the fire services of Skye, July 2016)
Copyright © Colin Crewdson 2017
I live now in Devon, but have lived in many other places. My career has been osteopathy, built on the back of many other things.