There was someone sitting on a bench on the Perygyl when I arrived there this morning. I tried not to be irritated. It is mine. At that time in the morning it is mine. I want to be alone there. To stand unobserved at the end of it and look out to sea and the stars and the sky and be alone. I couldn’t tell whether it was a man or a woman. It was too dark. I just saw the boots extending out from the bench. We didn’t greet each other. It didn’t feel appropriate for either of us. That time is a liminal time. Often I can’t find my voice. I think we both wanted silence and solitude. Perhaps they were just as disappointed as I was. I stood for a short while and moved on. Let it be. There is room. There is room for all of us.

The moon was a circle this morning. Flooding my studio with white light. No torch needed. A circle. A perfect white circle.

A sign of summer. Kids making bonfires on the beach. I love the smell. I can smell it from a long way off, carried as it by the wind. I saw their shapes against the yellow-orange of the flames. Mostly they build them on South Beach.

I wanted to make it bearable, enjoyable even. I asked him to stay out. I wanted the flat to myself, to clean it unhindered. To be able to leave all the doors open, to take my time. I think that was what worked. I gave myself to task, even the hoovering. How can I make this OK? I asked. By not fighting it, the voice said, by letting it be. I turned on the radio. Radio 3, nice and loud. Petroc’s calm voice made it OK. And it was. And now it is clean. The sun shone through, the birds sang through the open windows and it smells fresh. I love it when the floors have been mopped, all that dust and fluff, for the moment taken away.

We didn’t go. And that is OK too. Even having to pay the deposit. It is OK. The weather here is kinder. We have sun while London has rain. It is for the best. I will let it be so.

It is time to let it go. We gave her a name though I cannot remember it now. We’ve only had her for five years, but oh what an expensive love she has been. He wanted her. And we’ve enjoyed her, certainly. But I am happy to let her go. And he is excited, test-driving her replacement this very morning, I believe. I shall leave him to it. And I have to let go too. Of my safety. Be kind. That is what I tell myself. I want to give him joy, security, and love. So yes, he can have it.

The sky is cerulean. A few clouds. He says he will walk with me to North Road to our bench if the sun is still shining this afternoon. That would be nice. Will they be playing bowls?

I finished the review. I worked hard. He was kind, supportive. Though I was scratchy near the end. It’s when I put pressure on myself. It has to be done NOW! Does it? Breathe. Let time take its course. I like being in the writing. In it, in the process of it. The start and end are always a little uncomfortable. The start because I don’t yet know where I am going and the end because tiredness brings on doubt. An ugly, self-abnegating doubt that kills all joy of achievement. It is so good to have him there. I take it in with a board or book to lean on and pen and leave it with him. Will he like it? Is it any good? Sometimes I just don’t know. But it feels right to keep on doing it. I reach out with my writing beyond myself. And that is good.

I will call her on Friday. And her. And her.

By Ellen Bell

Artist and writer currently living in Aberystwyth.