DEA SILVARUM – Goddess of the Woods
North pavilion printed card with handwritten annotations
Garden and grounds scheduled walks
I made a selection of poems on the theme of hunting, read during walks in the gardens and grounds. The walks took place on 5 September and 10 October; an annotated list of the poems was placed in the drawer of a table in the pavilion.
The hunting theme was suggested by the ceiling painting of Diana (or Artemis) and Actaeon in the North Pavilion. Actaeon has been hunting deer with his friends in the woods. After a successful, bloody morning, they pause; Actaeon wanders off alone and stumbles upon the goddess Diana, bathing. Angry that he has seen her naked, she turns him into a stag, and he is hunted down and killed by his own dogs.
Ken Cockburn is an Edinburgh-based poet, who regularly collaborates with visual artists on book, exhibition and public art projects. Recent publications include Veined With Shadow Branches, with painter Andrew Mackenzie, and The Road North: a journey round Scotland guided by Basho’s oku-no-hosomichi, a long poem written with Alec Finlay. He has led poetry walks in indoor and outdoor locations, including Edinburgh’s Old Town, the National Galleries of Scotland and the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh.