INNOCENT LANDSCAPES REVISITED: 27 / MAR / 2010
Posted by David Farrell
Apologies for the hiatus but my mother’s fencing with Mr C became a little more complex recently so long hours in hospital visits Dysoned up my few words so a brief update for now.When visited at the end of February there had been no renewal of the search at Carrickrobin since before Christmas and I was uncertain as to what lay ahead. It is now heading towards the end of March so last Sunday, having spent some time at Wilkinstown, I ventured further north hoping to benefit from significantly longer days. Driving down the small lane I noticed the return of the drainage pump, so they had returned. Unlike Wilkinstown with its deep trenches and increasing number of time-mounds, Carrickrobin is difficult to photograph in terms of a shifting landscape. It is very flat and the area being searched is tight and precise. However the earth like an exotic dancer can reveal itself slowly and show us hidden things. The initial area searched has been leveled and returned and they have simply continued on from where they left off trying to follow those instructions: "Walk up that lane, past the green field on the right and the stone mounds, and you’ll see the bogland. After 150 yards of bogland, stop. Walk 30 yards into the bog - that’s where the body is buried". But they are getting close to the initial drainage moat in this part of the bog so if it yields nothing they will possibly move deeper into this wetland ignoring the specifics and exhuming areas that the archaeologists have assessed as possibilities.
In this slight movement down the lane a small hidden surprise - this seam of chalk-like clay has emerged and when thrown up against the dark bog there is an uncomfortable and eerie beauty particularly with the inversion of order - it looks and feels like an attempt at whitewashing the bog to eliminate the stain of past events.