Wild Moment: Helen Watson

Published: 15th May 2018

"This is what it must have been like, when Slioch was more than twice its height..." - a poem inspired during a tea break

Layby

The light is fading through cloud over Loch Torridon. Lead and mercury. Watching from the open door of the van I notice my heart’s quick beat.  The skylark’s trill, fluttering on the rim of my subconsciousness, is gone, as is the low hum of a car making its way to Strathcarron.

The wind has dropped and I hold my breath. There is no sound.

None.

A porpoise is still slicing the water in the bay below. Silently sending out ripples to hit the mussel lines. Presumably snorting.

The first car headlights gleam alone at the end of Trotternish.

This is what it must have been like, when Slioch was more than twice its height. Before there were lungs to gasp air or trill and howl – or leaves to rustle in it. When sound was made by the weather and hillsides crashing endlessly into pools of clear water.

Then Pre-Cambrian plaques fizzed with oxygen…

All cacophony of living sound just a quickened heartbeat in the life of a mountain.

Wild Moment Helen Watson - layby

Helen's picture shows Beinn Alligin from Loch Torridon.

Read more of Helen Watson's words online and on Twitter @HelenWatsonTCW

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