Into the Blues

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Round rings of stone on the fellside

Bedded with bluebells, the ancient home

On terrace banked with rock

Pink Ennerdale Granophyre, ground round by glacier,

Dragged down from Dodds heights

Weathered to fertile soil.

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Now people return to the fold, above Scales Beck

The new-found steading, measured with laser and staff

Drawn with Derwent pencil

Whose core was once wadd from over the pass.

Black and white watches sheep

Where once short cattle grazed.

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In the shadow of Scales Knott

The fertile delta lies with cup-marked slab

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Soon peat and bracken reclaim the cairn-fields,

Just now laid bare

Before the swelling fronds

Return to cloak the land

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Across the lake above Rannerdale’s green fields

Whiteless Pike’s pointed pyramid

Another ancient homestead’s blue banks

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A squint of the eye, the lights right and they’re there

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Soon they grow,

Even deep enough to hide a dog

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Notes: Bluebells seem to like prehistoric sttlements! The complex settlement features at Scales Beck cover a broad chronolgy and the recent discoveries of hut circles and a cup marked slab would suggest  that this stretches back at least to the later prehistoric period. Amongst the the numerous features are cairn-fields and post medieval farmsteads and a series of rectangular “bothy” or shieling structures which surround but are discrete the core settlement site on the delta. The latest phase of settlement was first noted in  1936 by Nicolas Size and recorded more fully by Thomas Hey in 1945 who considered some of the features to be “Native British” in origin, these can be seen in the Transactions of the Cumberland and Westmorland Antiquarian and Archaeological Society . The more enclosed nature of the settlement at Rannerdale also suggests that this is a later prehistoric feature although it was previously considered to be a later deserted settlement. Both these structures have now been surveyed by the Lake District National Park Archaeology Volunteers to whom thanks are due, out in all weathers, fine and not so good.

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2 comments
  1. Finola said:

    Lovely! Off to Inishmurray soon, also renowned for its bluebells, although we have missed the season.

    Like

  2. Thanks, sounds like a nice trip you’ll be having. Yes they are over here now but it was a good season, I’m sure they are increasing in numbers or is that my imaginings!

    Like

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