Letter to Monty on the flood, 'garden' and angels.

Dear Monty,

Like you we are currently experiencing flooding, not on the same scale, as we are high above the flood plain of the Tawe, but it requires sandbags to stop the burst brook coming through the front door of the old band room.

Water forms so much of our landscape, it carves and cuts through rock and soil, pouring toward the sea, it creates the character of this land.

I watch and wait. The Darren mountain forms a dark shadow opposite us, and is a reminder that we are on the edge of wilderness. Most towns border with other settlements, this one links with others in a sinuous line following the river valley with smaller and smaller communities the further North you go, eventually melting into the Brecon Beacons.

Here in Ystalyfera however, it is hard edged - a cut and bruised landscape of human struggle and industrial hunger. The land beyond the coal and the limestone in contrast is hedged and farmed.

Post industrial landscapes have a haunting quality to them, the ghost of mining can be heard in the gushing torrents off the old coal tip, and here in my small back garden - into which I bring chunks of washed out anthracite and coal measure plant fossils.

The Winter solstice has passed, soon light will return and 'The desired of all nations will come.' Peace is what I desire the most. I am sure that this year I have met with angels - messengers who have taught me so much.

'Are not the angels ministering spirits ?'

Peace to you Monty


( artwork photographed by www.eleanorflaherty.co.uk)


  1. Pearls before (missing) swine, Paul, and beautiful pictures. Made a comment that vanished, trying again... Have a great new year amongst friends and family. XXXX

    1. Thank you Anne, the photographs of my paintings were taken by Eleanor Flaherty, She did a brilliant job of capturing the textures of the plaster surfaces. I think Monty may regard this blog as unedited drivel, who knows ?

    2. Thanks to Anne, I have now found your elusive blog. Your weather has slipped over to sunny South Africa - we have low heavy black cloud. 35C, but that was yesterday!

      PS I will persevere but I suggest you ditch Word Verification and just moderate your comments. The spam filters are effective. Sometimes they eat comments which you would retrieve as NOT Spam At All!

    3. Thank you for the visit and thank you to Anne for directing you ! I will switch off word verification, was stupidly unaware it was switched on !

    4. It's been a long time. I now blog under my real name, and RL face. I saw 'floods' and thought your post was from now. Have you been affected this time around?

    5. Fortunately not, though many were at lower levels. Longing for sunshine now!

  2. Another succinct post, Paul, beautifully illustrated. Your Darren Mountain picture is bold and clear, but gently expressed.
    What a landscape to be in. It sounds to me like you wouldn't want to be anywhere else.
    Peace to you.

    1. Peace to you too ! I have been messing up the replies so forgive me for being so slow, have a good transition into the new year.


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