Picture This: Into the Blind at Nibon

by Keith Savage · 2 comments


Northmavine is an orchard of calcified boulders trailing to the blue-black sea surrounding Shetland like a watery iris. Barren miles pass beneath my tires as I smooth flat the map in my car. Every unmarked road, every bumpy track will guide me to new vantages and vistas. The road to Nibon sends the car bouncing in and over potholes, around deadly blind turns, and to the brink of precipices that strain beneath me. Nibon is little more than a rock garden with the ruins of a croft and an old water mill. The wind bunches up the sea here like blankets at the foot of the bed. Get up, go back, it howls.

All other souls have taken this advice, but this enforced solitude on Nibon’s hard hillside passes visions before my eyes. I wonder about the people who lived here, who live everywhere. We all must be like threads on the loom, our warp cut crosswise by the weft of thoughts, beliefs, and imaginings that knit us together. Who are the threads next to me I have left to meet? When we are released from the loom and given eyes, I will not wonder at those powerful moments of resonance I experienced along the warp; I will see them, and know, finally, that they were the hyperopic glimpses of a tapestry weaving toward completion.


KenNo Gravatar March 21, 2013 at 4:52 PM

How amazing is that landscape? As much as I love trees and forests I’m drawn to these landscapes. I wonder how many people gathered shellfish from the shore and fish from this loch or inlet?

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Keith SavageNo Gravatar March 21, 2013 at 10:21 PM

I should think many. This place was so far from any kind of infrastructure, whoever lived here must have had to rely, at least partially, on gathered food. Farming is not an option in this rocky soil.

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