There is a quote from TS Elliot which I have always been struck by: 'We shall not cease from exploration and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.'
I came across it again recently and it has spurred me into a new project. I am going to the same bench overlooking the South Cliff Gardens and the sea at around the same time on the same day every week and I will quickly sketch and/or write briefly what I experience. By the end of twelve months I should have 52 snapshots of the turning year. What I will do with these snapshots I have no idea, but that is part of the exploration, the arriving and the knowing for the first time.
Today I rather regretted the spot I had chosen, but writing with gloves on (never easy) and hat pulled down I had a go:
I heard the roar from half way down Prince of Wales Terrace, and here I cling to the balustrade like it's a ship's rail. The wind doesn't want me to write, it is raw slapping on my face. My fingers tingle, the blood freezing in their tips. Grey rolling, white splashed, unceasing, cold. And yet on the way here I saw green spears of daffodils still to blossom standing triumphant above the dark earth. Smells elude me. Fresh, cold, great distances, void, murderous - are any of these descriptive of a smell?