Stanza Stones Trail

The wind set in and the dried grasses whirled around the quarry like fairies as I searched all around for the first Stanza Stone on this long distance footpath. The bright shining sun that had been blazing so hot as I trekked up to the top of Pule Hill disappeared and I was feeling very alone and a bit lost in the middle of nowhere. I took a well earned lunch break to eat my vegan pork pies, then suddenly I found the stone, in a tucked away spot.

Simon Armitage’s poetry trail was set up around the time of the last jubilee and for the London Olympics culture program. It is a bit faded now and difficult to find, but it will stand the test of time. The six poems on the walk between Marsden and Ilkley have the theme of the weather, especially water in all its forms as this is a very damp area. This spot up above the little town of Marsden in the West Yorkshire Moors would be worth going back to in the winter to get the fullest effect of the poem – “Snow”.

Here is a line or two from the poem as can be picked out in the picture below.

SNOW by Simon Armitage

‘Snow like water asleep, a coded muteness to baffle all noise, . . . . .

. . . The odd unnatural pheasant struts and slides. Snow, snow, snow

and me reciting the whole poem. I am looking forward to completing the rest of the trail over the summer.

Subscribe to get access

Read more of this content when you subscribe today.

Published by simplyme841

How I got through it I really don't know, but I did a vow of silence for learning disabilities for a year a couple of years ago. I had wanted to do it for three or four years beforehand, after finding out about an Australian who did it for the animals. But the timing was never right. It was difficult but during the silence I learnt about John Francis, the environmentalist and author, who did it for seventeen years whilst walking barefoot across America playing the banjo. I had to make sure I drank enough fluids and had plenty of exercise so that my respiratory system didn't collapse, and learnt new things and read difficult books to keep my mind alert. It is very tough again during lockdown too, but immensely difficult for those with learning disabilities. I began writing my poetry last spring in the first Covid pandemic lockdown, and it poured out of me. But as you can tell from my readings my voice is still weak.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: