On Swartkopsberg

Today we went up the mountain looking for Serruria hirsuta, a critically endangered fynbos flower that grows in only one location in the world, on the slopes of the Swartkopsberg. Winds from the Indian and Atlantic oceans meet here, tiny boats moor far below in the harbour. And then we saw the first flower… although we might easily have walked past. Delicate, in full ecstatic dance on the wind:

I have been here from the beginning. Next to rock grey with the ages, crusted with lichen. Next to the sea, blue as Mary’s veil. The wind blows Pentecostal, searing the slopes with exultation. And I, crowned with fur and lace, tethered between sea and sky, complete unto myself. The glory of this mountain is my Queendom.


Julia Casciola ©