Albion, ancient sites, Art, TOLL, travel, Trickster

Twelve Apostles?…

Dumfries and Galloway, 28th October 2022…

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The name of this circle is an example

of what we might want to term

cultural misappropriation.

*

There are now only eleven stones

remaining and many if not all of them

show signs of if not attack, then certainly neglect.

*

From the gate into the field

the toppled stones

resemble sitting cows.

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And this impression is augmented

by the numerous, if even more distant, sheep.

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Traces of the, until quite recently, dividing hedge

running through the circle are also still visible…

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And we regard our culture civilised!

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The cilvilisation which originally constructed this site

clearly had much wider vistas than our own.

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And what remains of their stone circle

still nestles in its amphitheater of hills.

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The surrounding landscape is filled

with other megalithic features:

cursus, ring ditches, enclosures and mounds.

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The phrase, ‘now fallen and decapitated giants,’

springs rather too readily to mind,

and singularly fails to move my soul.

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Twelve of anything

usually refers to the constellations.

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Weirdly, that still holds good for the Apostles too,

if they ever really existed as flesh and blood individuals.

*

Here we have instead

soil and stone.

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What forms can still be discerned

in the stones appear for the most part

violently truncated.

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And rather too angular to be natural.

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Some, though, retain vestiges

of their natural grace.

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This stone is reminiscent

of one of the cove stones at Avebury

bu smaller.

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Which thought proves

too much for the sheep.

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According to Aubrey Burl, for whom such things

seemed to be important,

this stone circle is the seventh largest in the British Isles!

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The notion of measuring the sites in this way

remains faintly ludicrous.

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It is doubtless as big,

or as small, as it needed to be.

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Given the pattern of ‘cups’ it is unlikely

that these stones were ever upright.

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The folklore here,

as at many of the other large sites,

tells of a thunderstorm interrupting

the destruction, and this may well be true.

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Tortoise or bird?

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Do the forms actually

reside in the stone,

or only in our mind?

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Given that we drove up here in a rainstorm

we are now being blessed by the weather.

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And this pattern, once set,

was to continue…

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Soon enough we would

set out in search of seals

but the stones could not have known that.

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Could they?

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It is sometimes difficult

to sort authentic from inauthentic.

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This stone resembles one

from Stanton Drew

but smaller.

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This one, to date,

is unique.

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Next time you want

to scare off the sheep…

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