Memories of The Mothership residency in Dorset April 2017


The Mothership April 2017 Kate Walters


A green mouth, woody fingers, bowls of deer dust and wire pulled hair (in my pocket on Shetland, even in Italy: it sticks)

Walking in Sun along leafy lanes, red carcass beside the road, enormous, stenchy, a story about a farmer who beheaded a cow, left her here, ignominiously, to rot red to black in the early summer heat

Memories of a farm and badgers, and another farmer who didn’t believe me when I said that I’d shared a bed with badgers when young, one had swung on my nightdress in play and I had darted about the house in fear…

The farm with perfect meadows and flowers, and everything has changed in thirty years….     Kingcombe


And of railway cuttings dark and forgotten with broken bridges and shadowy pathways

Meeting an old friend up on sandy ridges in cold wind speaking of teaching and people I know no more, and of views across Dorset barrows I rode on when young with my childhood friend now dead. Mary.

A hot room with sunny windows and huge trees old friends watching me as I wondered, felt inadequate – sad even – thinking of Rilke and the strings of luminous, running deer; my son came and we sat beside other trees in the woods, the sun bathed us and the tracks of deer narrow and plaited I came to know as my hand.

In the garden with seedlings and soil and geese bathing joyfully opening wings white- wide, I took my son to visit an old lady who had held him as a babe, and loved him as her own, knowing she would not see him again; and of being recognised in Powerstock from living here twenty years and more before;

Of trees spreading crowns sun swollen, gorgeous.

I drew in my books and felt lost.


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