This bit of land.
A small house in a small garden.
Like an island on an island on an island.
The madness of busy life, of modern life, raging around it like an untamed river.
And still this place stands.
There is nothing like this house, like this land.
The love is tangible here.
You can breathe the love.
In the house my uncle built with his own hands.
The love that is in every brick that he placed.
The magic of the mosaics he made.
Every piece of wood that he carved.
Every wall holds memories.
Every shrub, every tree, every particle in the soil has been cared for.
Memories of summers. Reading.
Eating tangy red currants drowned in sugar.
My first taste of alcohol. A dram.
Homemade black currant liqueur to keep the doctor away.
And breathing the love of my great aunt and great uncle.
The loss is tangible too.
The roads that closes in and are closed off.
The roaring screams of machines.
Of pointy metal birds and endless streams of automatic four-wheeled things.
Houses, homes, garden and memories disappearing around us.
Meadows and fields.
Swept away by desires incomprehensible to us.
The desire for ‘progress’ and ‘competitive strategies’.
For the city to be attractive to ‘future markets’.
The airport, a beast in itself. Growing. Growing. Growing.
Land drawn in. Taken over. Absorbed.
Where open space has become only noise.
And still there is a little island.
The place where my family lives.
Where you can breathe the love.