Doctor Who (Love and Monsters)
There is magic there, in those mountains. Inherent in the woods and hollows, tumbling down the mountain sides, rising up like mist, but also in the people: their songs and stories and ways, their yarbs and praying rocks, their burn-talking, water-dowsing, blood-stopping charms. Things get remembered there that other people forget, until one day somebody wonders where that Child ballad or old-timey cure went and comes looking to find it, kept safe in the memory of the mountain and its folk. It is not a coincidence that Faery, the most well-known “home grown American strain of religious witchcraft” as Ronald Hutton called it, has its roots in Appalachia. If you have any love of such things, know that the tributaries of your knowledge have springheads in those hills.
The magic cannot be separated from the land. You can put the knowledge in a book, perhaps, but that does not preserve it; once everything is gone but the dry pages, they only point to what is lost. Magic is alive, as the mountains are alive, as we are alive. One of the most diverse ecosystems on Earth cloaks those mountains like a mantle woven from a million colors. Richness, true wealth, in the living breathing threads, wealth we barely comprehend because it seems so ordinary, precious beyond anything else we know or could tell. Like the old ballads, we remain ignorant of its value, perhaps, until it is lost…except when a thing is finally gone from these mountains, the oldest in the world, it is gone forever.❞
Sara Amis, 'Poison in the Heart of the World' (via brambleofthesidhe)