|Visiting the Fishstone this morning I was delighted at the size of the beast. Eighteen feet, to the inch, is stands solemnly beside the River Usk, with an air of bemused calm. Like a stunned salmon one gains the impression this stone is merely recovering its senses before leaping back into the cold, clear waters nearby. The warm red, almost salmon pink sandstone adds to the fish similarity, and also makes touching the stone a welcoming tactile experience.
The slight angle it finds itself leaning lends to it an air of dynamic movement, like a crouching hare, alive, sensitive to its environs and watching, watching, watching...
The site is friendly and clean, and small offerings were placed in cracks and cubby holes of the stone. The early morning sun had stripped the grass of dew, but the rear of the stone still shone in the cooling shade.
The dynamics of the location are interesting, as is the relation to the other stones in the locale. Local folkore twists many tales around these, but I note that not one contains the usual 'punishment' for dancing on the sabbath so beloved of the Cornish sites. These stones have been loved, and this is reflected in the folk memory that permeates the area.
This is a site you could visit at dead of night, in winter, and still feel protected.
Access is by appointment only. In the wet this would be a bog - walk for about half-three quarteres of a mile beside the river.
Posted by Dominic_Brayne
14th August 2003ce
Edited 6th August 2004ce