January 2021. The dead of winter. The middle of a pandemic. The death of my mother's parents. I return ‘home’ to the Ox Mountains of County Sligo, Ireland. My mother toils away in isolation outdoors; a life long long dream realized. There are no people here, but she is not alone. "This place is teeming with life," she says. So much so, it begins to overwhelm her. Is there space for her life here? Winter storms batter her crumbling caravan, gale force winds blow down overhanging trees, predators feed off the animals she painstakingly mothers.
I start to make a film with her. This isn’t the first time we’ve done this; it probably won’t be the last. So we know how this will go. We will do many spectacular things. We will sit on logs, walk through forests, and stand in rivers. We will listen to each other read and watch each other eat and drink. There will be time apart from each other too, on endless days of manual labor for her which create endless days of worry for me. Before long, the film will be over, spring will come, I will leave once more. Our time together is always fleeting, only our films stand still.
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