A quick and weird fact about me: I absolutely love strolls in victorian semi-abandoned cemeteries. If you’ve been seen my posts for a while, it probably comes as no surprise to you that I’m a lover of spooky spots, gothic churches and tales, victorian ghost stories, bloodsucking creatures aka fictional creatures, the vampire, and well bats… anything that can be related to Halloween. Indeed this is one of my favourite times of the year. And while time has been scarce for me to go on exploring a new cemetery (may do or not do this next weekend, depending on the weather. The forecast looks dreadful so far, so I’m keeping my hopes down), funnily enough, I accidentally came across a cemetery on my way to a printer shop this past Saturday. I was actually a bit in a hurry, but the sign saying that the grave of John Constable, one of my favourite artists of all time, made me stop. And while I could not find his grave, I was pleased to have found this churchyard, at St. John-at-Hampstead. I was quickly entertained by a squirrel chase right in front of me and the sudden silence was welcoming.
It gives me shrills to say it, but to me, there is something special in seeing the life taking over the death that lies below. I see these graves with no engravements, anonymous, I wonder who their owners are, who were the families who cared to put them there. Were these named at some point, but names removed by the elements of Nature? I wish the old trees could talk. They have seen everything. The burials, the visits. I wonder when visits stopped coming. I wonder what was the fashion at the time. I wonder what have they died of, which dreams became impossible to be turned into reality. Whose hearts were broken, whose rejoiced? In these places, Nature indeed seems to rejoice. Its greenery isn’t equal to the greenery one finds in parks where death doesn’t fertilise the soil. And while the organic matter of such bodies has long been gone, in the stone graves ivy and moss thrive, with the elderly trees protecting them from the rough rains and winds. And which winds dare to bend those strong, knotted arms? They seem unshakable, imposing upon ourselves full of wisdom that is unsharable. Only the playful squirrels dare to climb upon those thick trunks. Nature protects nature, and we humans seem to have become a part of something else. Until death brings us back to the ground.
I suppose this is my way of wishing you all a great Halloween season. Whether you’re just having fun, are a believer of the Day of the Death (Día de Los Muertos), meaning that the spirits of your loved ones will return to Earth on the night of the 31st, or simply enjoy this season and share the taste for the gothic and dark like I do… if you don’t celebrate it at all… I hope at least you enjoyed my quick taken photos from my iPhone and have a wonderful Fall season 🙂