The meadow is always open. A public path runs alongside Borrow Beck taking you into the heart of the valley. But not many people come – this is a hidden gem of Cumbria. When I invited a group of adults in to share the space and explore poetry, everyone left with smiles and inspiration. I included a playful poem that was uncovered while we were sitting under the sycamore trees in my last blog post.
The day after that leisurely sun-kissed poetry sharing, thirty children from Tebay school walked in to High Borrowdale. They arrived at the first meadow gate after more than an hour’s walk, fizzing and buzzing with energy. They seemed to have pushed the early morning mist westwards in their wake and as the day got warmer, their curiosity grew.
The young meadow detectives hunted out flowers, conjured up rich descriptive terms for them; they stopped and listened, and made sound maps; they drew and wrote on bunting; they ran from clegs.
And together, they wrote a poem. It contains a line – or two – from every child:
Meadow Poem, written by children from tebay school, July 2 2015
Beautiful flowers, beautiful life
Massive meadow, rocky rocks
Here we are.
Stands out from far away
Luminous colours, yellow as the sun
Or a Giraffe.
Twittering birds, rustling trees,
Red clover, a million fireworks
Gorgeous Guilly, he’s asleep
Cute as a baby.
And the grasses wish in the wind,
Swishing wind, blowing wind, whistling
And the flowers, they never hide
Never hide from their beauty.
Walls like stony ribbons
Meadow rocks, smashing together
And the plip-plop of pebbles
Falling in the stream.
But the cleggs are monstrous
And the midges menacing
They suck your blood
With their bites.
Tall trees, growing like a whale
Or the yellow submarine
On the hill in Borrowdale.
Terrific trees and buzzing bees,
And scattered around us
Here at our feet, red clovers
Like juicy strawberries.
Buttercups shining like the sun
Oxeye daisies like fried eggs
A group of lonely stars dancing.
Beautiful features fill our hearts
The clegs are so annoying
But not quite as annoying
As two sisters.
And here, when all is quiet
We sit and listen, we sit and listen
To the birds, to the wind,
To the sounds all around.
And then we come to the end
And the meadow will end
When the flowers are cut
And we run home through bugs.