Ricardo Blanco's Blog

Old red sandstone, its beating heart

There is a spot just below Pen y Gadair Fawr, on the narrow track that leads to Waun Fach, that I think of as the epicentre of the Black Mountains, its beating heart.  The thought struck me with… Read More

Preaching the crusade at Partrishow

Partrishow, tucked away in the folds of the Black Mountains, was named for a sixth century holy man called Issui, who settled beside a well in a remote hillside gully. The story goes that Issui was robbed and… Read More

Above the fog line

There is a world above the fog line, as we discover. Two hundred and fifty metres above sea level, we emerge into a landscape filled with colour. The sky is a cerulean blue. Like the inhabitants of Plato’s… Read More

The distant glow of somewhere

Walking along the ridge that separates Cwm Grwyne Fawr from the Vale of Ewyas, I am attentive to the details, and enter a familiar state of watchful trance. But the details are relatively few when walking in a… Read More

Three instances of being in the world

I am four or five years old and we have arrived at a campsite in southern France or possibly Spain. It is late July. I am looking at the incredibly bright night sky and ask my father which… Read More

Alchemy, alephs and insomnia: origins of The Blue Tent

The Blue Tent is released by Parthian as an e-book next Tuesday (20th August). Since the novel has provoked quite a few questions from readers, I thought it might be helpful to publish the text of an email… Read More

The Surprising Lizard

Walking in the Black Mountains I find a dead lizard, belly-up on the gorse. What is it doing here? It is a surprising lizard. I am walking along a long ridge of moorland, with the Ewyas Valley to… Read More