If I sit here and try to imagine The Beechwoods, indeed a beech wood, the image is of smooth, grey bare-trunked trees rising up from a ground of mast, leaf litter and a few herby plants, broken here and there by gnarled roots, to a thick canopy of whispering translucent leaves. It’s an accurate enough picture, subject only to the variations gifted by the seasons. But it’s also an archetype. The reality is of diversity, of the existence of atypicality that can’t be categorised. It does not deny the archetype, rather it reinforces it as the ideal beech wood, Beechwood, of both experience and imagination.
Photo: The Beechwoods, Cambridge, June 2017