There are many wonderful sculptures in the forest including; the Irish Hare, the Fox, the Badger, the Otter, the Pine Marten, the Frog and the Red Ghosts.
A million shades of green shimmer in the golden glow of the sun
on trees resembling cathedral steeples
which reach to the heavens that created them,
the rich velvet of the grass cushioning my every step.
Snow white daisies with their tiny faces smile up at me
while colours of crimson red, royal purple and cool blue blend
on the palate of the rhododendron bushes
as they intertwine into each other in a vibrant embrace.
A symphony of bird-life celebrates its natural theatre with the melodies of angels,
stopping and starting as if controlled by an unseen divine conductor.
I walk through the trees enveloped and protected in a cocoon of nature,
passing the mystical ruins of an old Norman house.
I stand a while and swear I can hear the laughter of children who once lived there
resounding throughout the ancient walls.
The notion that they shared this place with me was somewhat comforting.
It is an immortal place.
A winding path meanders around the tired still river.
It slowing ebbs it way through this sacred domain, as if reluctant to leave it.
What stories could it tell, I wondered, as I stood a while on "Cromwell's Bridge"?
The name itself conjures up a host of devilish images.
Though the day is sweltering above the trees,
A smell of dank clay and must penetrates my nostrils.
The sun would never reach these mysterious, badger-inhabited paths and crevices
Guarded by enormous gnarled tree-roots and serpent-like ivy.
I find myself once again out in the open
And have to shade my eyes to the brilliance of the sunlight.
I amble towards a majestic and ancient chestnut tree,
its branches bowed to the ground in reverence.
I sit in its cool shadow, may back against the wise and powerful bulk.
How many generations have loved and lived beneath its caring canopy?
The engravings on its bark are
testimony to but a few.
I hesitatingly commence my stroll back,
to a world indifferent to such a place as this
and stop a while at a pond,
laden with lily pads and seductive secrets.
Just when I thought that I had indeed glimpsed heaven,
a kingfisher swoops down in kaleidoscopic splendour from his lofty abode
as if to remind me that there is always more to be revealed
in this enchanted paradise...