When I was last visiting Britain, I sent Jo a postcard of the Fairy Glen in Betws-y-Coed. She loved the card so much I promised her I would go there when I could and take some photos for her.
So, after I left Dinas Emrys, I followed the directions, parked, paid the small fee for one car and one visitor, and walked to the gorge in clear sunshine, with robin song as an accompaniment.
|Robin in a hedge on the way to the Fairy Glen|
|The path running alongside the gorge|
The Fairy Glen (known in Welsh as Ffos Ddofn, 'deep ditch') is as magical as the original postcard suggested. Canopy of berry-ladened rowans, autumning ash, oak and beech, even a single pine tree on an outcrop. Rocks worn through, over, around, streaked with fault lines. A stillness inside the echoing, tumbling, slapping, sluicing water, with its tracery lines of bubbles heading downstream.
|Looking upstream to the cascading waters|
|Looking downstream at the rapids|
|Behind these weathered, lichened, mossed rocks is the path down into the ravine|
|View of some of the luxuriant vegetation in the gorge|
|The one pine tree in the ravine|
The gorge worked its magic on me in another way, As often happens when you least expect it, something my visitor said prompted a few lines, so before I left I worked on a poem and in the evening completed it.
Down to the Fairy Glen
Betws-Y-Coed, Wales, Oct 2016
Back, hips and knees all gone, yet still he walking-stick’s
His old hill-walking body to the bottom, first time ever,
Shuffles across moss-drenched rocks, two cameras
For the curling, scurrying stream silver-gleaming the gorge.
|A closeup of the cascade|
|Departing view of the Fairy Glen as I climbed back up the path|
As always, any comments are appreciated.