The Yew and the Lake

I was glad to have company of 21 friends for my latest walk. Well organised with lots of hard work and dedication from all, it was an amazing experience to be in a gathering of so many old friends and new, and we traveled together to two very special places.

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Many Yew trees in Britain are Planted at sacred sites, places that are gateways between this world and the next. And this amazing tree is no exception. However the church that stands at this spot, is a mere 900 years old, most of the gravestones date from the 1800’s and later, the Yew tree itself is over 5000 years old, and considered by specialists in this field to be the oldest tree in Britain. So this site has been sacred for a long long time indeed.

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The immense size of this tree is hard to understand from mere pictures, but suffice to say, the dark area in this picture is the size of a normal door, and it is possible to walk right inside the tree itself and sit two or three people comfortably within its great girth.DSCN0196

 

I am not sure what has caused these bulbous types of growth on the trunk of the tree, but each one is covered in tiny twig-like branches, I wonder if these will grow larger over time too? We even found a few shoots that were growing bleached of colour as if they were grey hairs on the tree.

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After spending quite a while enjoying this marvelous ancient yew, we then headed south to Cerrig Duon, A very special stone circle with standing stone, stone avenue and also another single stone further up the road. This complex of stones is one of the best examples in Britain of a processional avenue leading from one stone to the circle. Unfortunately many of the avenue stones are now missing or buried in soil, but the main circle is quite well preserved.

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The above picture is of the main stone in the circle, looking up to the north. The views to the south are spectacular too, as it is possible to see a long distance down the valley. We all spent a little time at the stones, before moving on, and starting to walk up the line of the river to the lake on top of the mountain.

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The river cuts dramatically through the rock bed, creating a series of amazing waterfalls, pools and also providing the one place that is safe from sheep, where some stunning and probably quite old Rowan trees flourish. We were lucky enough to catch them during their most splendid time, covered in ripening berries.

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The climb was steep and long. But with such a large party of people, we had plenty to talk about, and plenty of encouragement to keep going, and get to the top. The lake however, is quite far past the high plateau of the mountain, in the shadow of the next ridge. And we walked and walked, higher and higher, following the river right back to its source, and wondering when we might finally catch a glimpse of the lake.

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Cotton grass was growing in the damper patches, giving us a warning to keep away from these areas, as they are marshy and can be quite deep in places. Finally we caught our first glimpse of the huge lake that feeds both the river we had walked up, and the river Tawe that flows all the way down to Swansea.

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Well, I’m sorry that it has taken me a full month to finish this post, and add Harry’s wonderful poem, but sometimes time does move in mysterious ways, a moment in time can indeed contain all time.

Thank you for sharing your words Harry, and thank you to everyone who has read and commented on this post, it was an awesome day 😀

 

 

Moment in Time

Sol shone behind the clouds.
No flares for my soul’s joy;
But my muse pulled me back
And saw Helios’ glowing ball in full flame.
Together we moved to the ancient ground.

Cernunnos watched
Within the ancient yew
As we approached her sacred roots.
Souls drawn to her transcendental scent;
Berries of red touched a warlock’s lips;
Within deep sleep
We gathered in time
To remember eternity.

The Dragon Stone awaited our return.
Through the crowds we climbed
Her slender breasts;
Back to her heart
From where once we strayed.
Resting our thoughts
Within her centre.

The water sweet,
Crystal clear,
Energizing life force.
Helios touches skin;
Warming hearts with love
For the friends who have seen us
Through the masks of decay.
Our souls joined in reverence
In the mountain’s flow.

In quiet synchronicity
Three souls thought lost in the human world
Joined the final ascent;
Each at their own pace
Like the spiritual paths of old.

To see the silver shimmer
For the first time
Is my dream awakened.
The shofar sounded,
Gathering all
To the sacred fire.
With bread and wine
The fellowship remembered
The sacred joy
Of friends travelling
The paths of life.

And then the miracle became clear –
The serpent force had lifted
From the lake!
So we joined in wonder at the water’s edge;
She called us in
To join the source…
A timeless moment
In a world of time.

Helios entered his sleep
And music flowed.
Songs of old stirred the souls.

Together, we parted.
Together forever
In time.

(By Harry)

 

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