Walking the Southwest Coastal Path


Day 23
Porthlevev to the Lizard 14 miles

Left the beautiful harbor town of Porthleven and made our determined effort to reach the most southerly point in England by days end. We fell into a rhythm of walking that quite easily falls into, and guides, a rhythm of thinking that soon becomes focused and attentive. Not idle daydreaming, but attentive to all the associative thinking that begins to assail one’s mind when left unguarded. And I get alarmed when, like Thoreau so eloquently addresses in his essay Walking, I discover that my head is somewhere other than where my feet are! And the gift that came this day when the two finally caught up to each other, was the ever constant presence of the sea.
When walking 630 miles of coastline one can quite easily come to a point where you just take that fact and reality for granted; like a good friend. Sometimes it all fades into the background, while at other times it becomes impossible to ignore. It’s the ever present rhythm of the sea that impressed itself upon me though this day, and how its ebb and flow mirrors my own breathing, and, when attentive to it, marks a quality of stillness seldom gained in our harried days.
And in that stillness the heartbeat of the earth becomes, for a moment, entrained to my own. Best described as wildness by Thoreau, and the very place that he wishes all his walks and sauntering will guide him, for it is in that wildness where we find not only the preservation of the world, but the very preservation of ourselves. And so it was with these pondering thoughts that our sauntering took us to the Lizard Point by the day’s sunset.


One thought on “Walking the Southwest Coastal Path

  1. Marlena Buzzell

    Keith and I are very much enjoying ‘being’ with you on your wondrous Long walk. Glorious views – and very much like The Ring of Kerry in Ireland, The Conner Pass, the Dingle Peninsula and hikes up Mount Brandon albeit a bit shorter!


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