Walk maps

Many of us walk the same route every day, it might be the walk to school and back, a trip to the corner shop or the regular dog walk. We may not always take the same route, but we may always go to the same place. The Dutch artist, herman de vries walks in a wood that he planted. He walks every day and picks up twigs and stones as he goes. He charts his walks on a map. The things he finds and brings home remind him of the place and of our relationship to the earth.

If you walk in the same place every day you can notice what is always there. You can note the changes through the year. On my walk to school there were privet hedges along one stretch of road. In autumn they were hung with spider webs, that shone on sunny mornings with water droplets. In the summer, the air was full of the heavy scent of white privet blossoms. 

Draw a map of a walk you take regularly. Mark on it the things that you notice. You might want to add notes and little stories. It could be a map with lists. Here is another way you could collect nature words. You can list the names of plants and trees, birds and insects, earth and clouds that you see each day.

sorrel               willow herb                 bee orchid                   primrose                     cowslip

bulrush            yellow flag                  daisy                            creeping jenny            clover

hawksbeard    water mint                  dandelion                    campion                      poppy

oak                  ash                              horse chestnut            beech                          birch

willow             poplar                          holly                            yew                             linden


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