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Credit: Marg Greenwood
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The Hut of Shadows

By Marg Greenwood

Camera Obscura near Lochmaddy, North Uist

The Hut of Shadows, Both nam Faileas, is on the coast near Sponish, North Uist not far from Lochmaddy. You walk to it via a wobbly suspension bridge. Chris Drury, an English environmental artist, constructed the hut in 1997. It houses a simply-designed camera obscura which hints at the relationship between land, islands and water.

The Hut of Shadows

A small, cairn-shaped bothy
near the dazzling shores
of Lochmaddy.
Roof of turf, walls of stone.

Duck through the entrance
round the curved passage
into the dark;
blacker than black,
glasses slow to adapt.

Feel for the bench,
sit down and wait.
Trust in lens and mirror
that project onto a large stone
the blurred image of sea
flecked with tiny islands,
birds and seals
and a passing fishing boat.

The Hut of Shadows, a small stone circular building with turf on its roof, situated on the right hand side of the image. The hut sits on grassy headland with the sea below. Image provided by Marg Greenwood

The Hut of Shadows, North Uist

Enjoyed this story and want to read more? Explore more of the beauty of the natural and cultural heritage of the islands of Scotland through the eyes of Marg Greenwood, the submitter of this story, in her fascinating new book Return to Muck.

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