Though chaos rules on the surface,
in the depths all becomes law.
from Psalm 92, A Book of Psalms
The Rev. Francis Kilvert, the nineteenth-century country parson and diarist who lived here in the Welsh borders, came to know his people and their local traditions well. In one of his parishes, he was told the people used to gather on Easter morning "to see the sun dance and play in the water and the angels who were at the Resurrection playing backwards and forwards before the sun." They were not serving any useful purpose, as the local poet Ruth Bidgood tells us in her poem "Resurrection Angels," they were not there for healing, they were at play - and in their dancing and playing they touched something in each of the onlookers:
To and fro went the wings, to and fro
over the waters playing before the sun....
The people had no words to tell
the astonishment, the individual bounty -
for each his own dance in his veins,
brush of wings on the soul.
The photograph was taken in the yard of a house that is being emptied. As I gazed upon this blossom, I felt I was looking at a hint of what one might see when passing from this world. I also discovered that two men were also present. They were not immediately visible because they were sorting through a large refuse bin, searching for usable scrap. We were startled by the sighting of one another; each of us was focused with the task at hand. We greeted one another with laughter. The iris simply bloomed on, seemingly content to be living between the ground and the sun.