Mounting the hill with its name a corrupted saint. The undated prehistoric postindustrial of the chalk pits. The sheep like wethers in the fog. Topped by earthworks added thousands of years apart; surrounded by the middens of bronze-age parties that cannot be named. A gap in the vapour mounding higher, a white cloud-hill glimpsed.
And then the earth’s air-quilt shifted, and the landscape went to deep-freeze again. A mole frozen out of its earth; foxes and sparrowhawks on red alert; towns looking like something from The Road, supermarket shelves empty, roads blanketed in ice. Avebury sarsens hard and fine against their mantle; Tan Hill – glorious Tan Hill – rippling its way into the Vale. I once dreamed that someone had stripped all the grass from it, rendering it a great white rolling whaleback: here was the reality.