Stuart France writes at:https://franceandvincent.com/
Stuart France writes at:https://franceandvincent.com/
“Well, it has taken a while, but I think we can be fairly certain that this particular example of the symbolist’s art has something to do with the number eight.”
“‘Fairly certain’? ‘Something to do with’? It is hardly the stuff of science, now is it?”
“Symbolism, by its very nature, is much more than science, and much less too.”
“You are not making much sense.”
“It is open like an ‘art’, but its precision is less focused and more inclusive.”
“I keep wanting to turn it on its head.”
“Which would give us a… mirror!”
“And the ‘S’?”
“Stands for saviour.”
“Or a stream.”
“Which flows underground.”
“No one in their right mind believes that stones can walk.”
“Despite the fact that the Folk-Record is unequivocable on this point.”
“It is also unequivocable about stones dancing, and drinking from streams.”
“I may be able to clarify the streams. They may be underground.”
“They may even be telluric currents, but you promised.”
“That, unfortunately, is deductive reasoning for you. It was the only bit of wall we had not checked.”
“We had so checked it… last time.”
“Only from a distance and that does not count.”
As it turned out there proved to be another bit of wall we had not checked.
Also distant and too far away to consider once the snow started.
I mean, really started.
There were compensations though, like the trees and the wildlife.
“Are you sure it isn’t the Throne-Stone?”
“Not near enough to the wall and the gate.”
“But the wall is a mnenomic. Your mind could easily have contracted the distance.”
“Not the right size, or colour.”
“Like that’s not easily accounted for.”
“Maybe you’re right and I’ve discovered a new species of stone, which can walk!”
“But that would be a New-Old species of stone.”
“So perhaps it just went for a stroll, again.”
“What, in the snow?”
Field-Mouse was out gathering wild-beans for winter when Buffalo came down to the meadow to graze.
‘He will mow down the long-grass with his prickly tongue and there will be no where left to hide,’ thought Field-Mouse, ‘I will offer him battle, like a man would do.’
“Ho, Buffalo!” squeaked Field-Mouse, “I challenge you to a fight.”
Buffalo went on grazing.
Field-Mouse repeated his challenge but still Buffalo went on grazing.
With his third challenge, Field-Mouse laughed contemptuously at Buffalo’s inaction.
“You had better keep still, little one,” said Buffalo, still grazing, “or I will come over there and step on you.”
“You can’t do it!” squeaked Field-Mouse in defiance.
“If you don’t be quiet I will certainly put an end to you,” said Buffalo, quietly.
“I dare you!” said Field-Mouse.
Before Field-Mouse had quite finished, Buffalo charged at him…
PC 963 Kraas turned and walked head-long into the sea breeze.
Her hair flicked in the wind like rampant flames.
“You know, I can’t help feeling we’ve missed a trick with this one.”
“It’s mentioned in the book,” replied Jaw-Dark pensively, “and in any case, it’s a pleasant enough spot.” He paused and bent down to look through a large eye-shaped ‘blow-hole’ in the promontory.
“What’s that?” said Kraas.
“Well, that depends…” said Jaw-Dark.
“That depends upon what?”
“…Upon your perspective,” finished Jaw-Dark.
“Nothing is ever straightforward with you is it?”
“The Irish name for this and other similar landscape features is Poll na Seantuinne.”
“‘Hole of the Old Wave’.”
Just then the sea crashed beneath the promontory and the foaming waves, in the mouth of the sea cavern, a hundred feet below could be clearly seen through the ‘chasm-hole’.
“Seems an apt description,” said Kraas, “if a tad unnerving.” Her gaze followed the slow drag of the tide and then lifted to the sky where wisps of grey cloud scudded on the wind, “in the beginning,” she said, “everything was chasm and chaos.”
“There is though another interpretation.”
“Poll na Sean Tiene means ‘Hole of the Old Fire’.”
“Okay, I can see where that might fit in with some of their concerns. Especially with all this baleful eye stuff.”
“Personally though I prefer the third alternative…”
“Ever the storyteller,” smiled Kraas, “Well, I’m waiting!”
“Poll na Seantuine, is the ‘Hole of the Old Woman.”
Kraas’ smile turned to a grimace, “Well, I wouldn’t go shouting that particular preference from the cliff tops if I were you,” she said through the grimace, and then added more seriously, “so which one is it?”
“Unfortunately for us and also quite possibly for them too, it is more than likely that it is all three of them.”
Stuart France & Sue Vincent
The Beeley Stone, ‘liberated’ from the churchyard at Bakewell, stands proudly in the centre of its village green once more. While the locals enjoy the fruits of its restoration, Ben, who had led the daring raid against authority, still languishes in jail.
Don and Wen, arrested and released without explanation in Ireland, now plot an erratic course through the wild places of Wales, while Jaw-Dark and Kraas, seeking the legendary stone of Fergus Mac Roy, have been separated in the most uncanny of circumstances…
As the darkness closes around them, the Black Shade haunts the moors above Beeley and, in the shadowy rooms of the old tower, an ancient and even stranger story begins to unfold…
It is clear that every ‘great philosophy’ is, no more and no less than, the confession of its author.
To explain how a philosophy’s highest flung claims have been derived, therefore,
we need only ask, ‘what really makes its author tick?’
The desire to know, is not, then, the Mother of Philosophy.
For, look, here one desire, and now there, another, has put knowledge
to use as a means to, shamelessly, further its own ends…
The fundamental desires of Man have always been ‘philosophers’.
And each of them is only too happy to present itself
as the be all and end all of existence!
As master of the others.
All Man’s desires are tyrannical.
And for the philosopher, everything is personal.
His ideas, inevitably, bear testimony to the hierarchy of his secret desires.
Friedrich Nietzsche, philosophical and psychological genius of the nineteenth century, in his book, ‘Beyond Good and Evil’, presaged the breakdown of the Western Aristocratic ruling elite and the irresistible forces that led to two catastrophic world wars. This new poetic interpretation of his master work teases out still relevant lines of thought for the reappraisal of our rapidly disintegrating current world order.
The question of value goes to the heart of who we are, what we are and why we think we are here… A tendency to make certain assumptions about our environment appears to be intrinsic to our nature, yet the meaningful existence we crave can only ever be granted by a ‘higher power’ which we now seem loathe to recognise outside of ourselves… We have always looked to those best qualified to answer our most fervent questions but what if they too have fallen foul of the ‘Auction-House of Things’… And what of the Beyond?
It is entirely possible that this ‘fella’ once stood in a ‘circle’.
He now guards a lay-by in an unassuming stretch of Dartmoor,
if such a thing can be said to exist.
Nearby, stands a ‘wayside cross’ which may not be a cross at all.
It may be a ‘hammer’ or a ‘thunder-bolt’.
It may even be a sign post…
We posit such querulous notions
only because the landscape
again appeared to be offering us ‘clues’.
And shortly after this impromptu stop,
the Dragon’s Breath completely whited us out…
We may have to go back again.