Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Knots

I couldn't resist this shot from Land's End in Cornwall. It's a fuzzed up knot and much repaired - or added to. Beyond the fence are the dangerous cliffs of a previous blog. It's a notional boundary because it wouldn't stop anyone from crossing the fence. So it's pretty much just a sign. Or is it a symbol? It could be the latter because knots are a sign of danger in many cultures. It is a Palestinian legend that if threatened by danger, an Arab can escape from his enemies by tying a knot in the fringes of his head dress and saying the name of Allah. But knots most often denote relationships. R.D. Laing wrote a book of what used to be known as "concrete poetry". Merely called "Knots" it tried to show what complicated strictures we encounter in our relationships. When we marry we "tie the knot". And appropriately for Cornwall, the sailor's handkerchief had three knots. Untying the first brought fair winds. The next meant a good catch. But the third was never to be untied since it kept storms under control!