Tuesday, 10 July 2018

Lighthouse - La Corbiere

One good reason for having an airport in Blackpool was that we could fly to Jersey in just under an hour, collect our pre-booked hire car and arrive at our hotel in time for morning coffee. So sad that those times have gone, but glad that we made the most of it when we could.

At the extreme south-western point of Jersey in the Channel Islands, stands La Corbiere lighthouse, tall and majestic above the rocks. These rocks have been the downfall of many sailors over the centuries. The most recent casualty, in 1995, was the Saint Malo, a French catamaran, which is thought to have tried to take a short cut along the Jersey side of the lighthouse. It became stuck on rocks then beached when the tide went out. Everyone was rescued and the Saint Malo was eventually taken along the coast to St Helier harbour for repair.

The lighthouse is built on the highest of the rocks on that stretch of the Jersey coast and was the first in the British Isles to be constructed of concrete. It was lit for the first time in April, 1874. A causeway through the rocks links Corbiere to Jersey at low tide and is a walk offering great views in all directions. The area is popular with artists and photographers for the unspoilt, rugged coast and dramatic rough seas.

My first glimpse of Corbiere Lighthouse was breath-taking.  I was stunned by the beauty and the atmosphere. Just to sit quietly and watch the sea, listen to the birds and take it all in. We returned many times during different stays in Jersey. On one visit, a South Island Cruise gave us the opportunity to see the other side and witness how choppy the sea can be, even on a calm day. It is one of the best places ever to watch a sunset, simply spectacular, and I hope, sometime in the future, we’ll be there to watch it again.

I found this poem by Leah Renee
we sat and watched the sea slowly rise
relentlessly beat those weathered rocks
covering the coast before our eyes
as hands discover sandy pockets
radiant rays of red smear the sky
tint the white washed walls of Corbière
heat of the solstice sun sheds our shy
scent of midnight lilies fills the air
fingers dancing with one another
twirling and leaping without a sound
too close to breathe but never smothered
all the while still glued to the ground
still watching whitecaps roll through the sea
with my white washed lighthouse next to me
Leah Renee



Steve Rowland said...

I love lighthouses, the symbolism, the practicality, the grace. Not been to Jersey though, so I've not see this one - but what a lovely poem by Leah Renee. Good choice. Thanks Pam.

Lady Curt said...

I too like lighthouses and have done three appliqué/ quilted pictures of various ones...and I've done a cross stitch picture of the one you've featured.

Adele said...

This is a lovely blog. I went to Jersey as a seven year old. First time I ever flew. Your writing about it has brought back wonderful memories of Dad. Thanks Pam.