turning point

Trees are growing.  

Dark branches gnarling and criss-crossing .. twisting in strange forms.

They watch, through knotted eyes, an event roller coaster. 

ImageThey watch humanity hobble on an inevitable journey of hurts and costly joys. 

The journey began somewhere ……. 

Bethpage, Jerusalem, Gethsamane, or back in time, forever back and forwards.

The trees watch the hobbling steps of creation to an inevitable turning point.

Each moment they watch, as the Creator shoulders darkness, patiently and constantly.

The trees watch. 

They will play their part…….

fresh branches for a pathway,

trunk and branches, heavy and spreading, for pain ……. but full of liberation…..

and fallen leaves,

decomposing as another turning point.


unbound and dancing

‘Unbind him and let him go.’

Lazarus … dead … in his wrappings. He is neatly bound, dressed with love and care, bound and unmoving……
tight wrapped, soft wrappings, swathed with love and tears, like cotton wool, but tight.

It’s a place of waiting he’s in, waiting, not doing. Waiting for something, anything, to happen.

Waiting in the death, in the absence of life.
What is desired now for this much loved brother and friend?


Even in precious life we tie up our loved ones, wrapping them in our desires.

This will be better, won’t it! I really care, so better behave in this way! It will be for the best, you’ll see!

So many restrictions …. do it this way … here’s your timetable … don’t be late!

It’s because I love you, you see!

Clip the wings … no flying … no risks or excitement … only the place of restriction.

Unbind me … Unbind me ……
I want to move, wriggle, stretch and be free.


Christ-love does not hold in restriction. Christ-love brings escape from the bindings, giving freedom to flight and lightness to life.

Love one another …… love and let go.

‘Release him and let him go!’

And Lazarus danced with life and delight, released by those who loved him.

Light and dark

In the dark waters, unseen …….
mud from the river bed smears the eyes … silt of the earth, brown, gritty and grey.

She is hidden, submerged, ready to be born, ready but maybe not prepared for some explosion of revelation.

Surfacing … emerging ….


In the light of early morning there is blinding intensity, colour … eyes shaded to cope with shafting light of sunbeams, arrow straight … all the colours of white light, split into a never-ending spectrum ….. bursting sparkling eddies or turbulent cataract. Salmon leap and sparkle, striving for calmer waters ….. down again to the safety of soft, shadowy grey.

Sight is blinding.

Sight is wonderful

But sometimes the eyes close and contemplate the moving images of dreams …..
….. under the light …. in the darkness where hope is constant and waiting is a patient thing.

Is she ready for this light, this blinding?

Perhaps light is a truly fearsome thing.

We share food treasure.

‘Daily, ordinary spiritual experience.
These create sacred spaces …
Quiet current of sacredness’

Brian D McLaren. Naked Spirituality

image read, liquorice and things.

The pathways wind and twist through the mountains to Kinlochleven, dropping downwards to that long, narrow inlet of the sea. Along the pathways there are people, distanced and tiny. They walk on their own tracks, journeys beginning at the beginning, wending, threading in and out and around one another. Each pathway forms its own strand of moving and exploring.

Some are alone, making the pilgrimage of the individual.
Some are in companionship already.

Then … strand touches strand and relationship is born. Woven contact brings excitement and sharing.

There are the two girls from Glasgow. They appear every so often and share journey space.
They share their liquorice … lovely colours of allsorts, stripy sugar sandwiches, speckled colour bombs … long strands of sweetness.

The Lorry driver from The Netherlands shares his story. The pathways are alive with conversation. A father walks, his little daughter on his shoulders, the lightness of the shared burden.

All share complaining of sore feet.

Sandwiches are shared with each other … and the sheep.
So many others, little and distanced, now become close, entwined as friends.

Sharing, we are fed … by bread … by laughter … by liquorice … and thirst-quenched by clear water.

The strands separate, flowing and weaving once more, but each carries the imprint of another … an imprint of love and generosity.

Sometime, somewhere … will there be recognition and holy awareness … somewhere?

I will lift my eyes …

The pathway up out of Glencoe  isn’t  called ‘the devils staircase’ for nothing.  The series of winding hairpin bends makes for a long plod.    My companion walks fast, keeping up a steady pace.  I walk in carefully measured sections, from bend to bend, zigzagging to avoid the steepness of the climb.

Then I stop.  I wait and look.   Looking down shows where the patterns lie, criss crossed paths, rough mounds, all levelled by the height.  The pathway winds from Bridge of Orchy, appears smooth and easy but yesterday it was a tough and rough old drove road.  The rough paths, taken at a distance, become smooth and are given pattern.

Sometimes the patterns make sense; often they don’t but I carry on looking anyway because there’s beauty and weaving and simplicity as I look down from a distance.  Where before there was only confusion and lack of conviction because of ridges, corners and a mysterious future not yet in sight, now there is clarity of a kind.  As time weaves and winds, yesterday’s future slowly blends into tomorrow’s past.

The river and the road wind endlessly out of sight.  The fields are patchwork.  Buachaille Etive Mor rises in awesome majesty, overlooking all.   I hold the weaving and patchwork patterns but plod on, up the staircase, breathless, to see what’s over the hill.    My companion is always waiting……

Always, my companion waits….