This short artistic film is about a gardener, who I call ‘the gentle gardener’. This Victorian gardener carried the same name as me. He died in 1885 aged 57 years:
In this film I wonder and wander in the gardens that the Gentle Gardener tended.
The film is open to interpretation but I hope that you may find that it carries thoughts and feelings in relation to love, nature, forgetting, and what is ‘in a name’: (you may wish to read my poems Canto One and Canto Two).
The Gentle Gardener began at Newton, Insch in Aberdeenshire where he tended the ‘Secret Garden’ (this garden survives today). My film begins outside the ruined Newton mausoleum (a sort-of temple).
The Gentle Gardener then moved to Edinburgh and had further training in the Royal Botanic Gardens (as I once did).
After this he was a gardener at Castle Semple, Lochwinnoch. The walled garden survives but now encloses sheep, scaffolding and ruined buildings (in this film you will see me outside the Castle Semple walled garden in the pouring rain and at the Temple which, although roofless, has out-survived the castle).
The Gentle Gardener then went to Altyre Estate, near Forres where he was the estate gardener for almost a decade.
The Gentle Gardener died in Forres in 1885 [where ‘Memory Lane’ is on the gate]
From Archive on 4, Radio 4: ‘Beckett’s last tapes‘, 10th August 2019 (this includes recordings of Samuel Beckett and short sections of ‘Waiting for Godo’
(1) ‘Gregory’s Girl’ by Bill Forsyth
(2) The beautiful Chinese anemones and alliums were filmed at Mossgrove, Bridge of Allan