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13 September 2009


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Dear 60-16

Your posts are beautiful. The words and the images reflect each other and intensify the message. The Bisham Church is ageless. You lead us from that to Eliot's words. Those last two lines are breathtaking; they brought tears to my eyes. Thank you for that.

Your posts make me think I should walk more. Or does one need a dog for that?


How beautiful.

What a lovely poem! And perfectly illustrated by that beautiful scene.

This is absolutely lovely - you've communicated the stillness and that sense of being caught up by the moment. The Eliot quote is perfect. I've always loved the 4 quartets - how could such a strange and unlikeable man write such beautiful stuff?

Thanks so much everyone; so pleased that this worked for you too.

Wendy: having a dog (or dogs as it was for me until earlier this year) has enabled me to search out and walk in places that I probably wouldn't have done on my own. And it was through having dogs that I rediscovered the joys of walking, although have done rather less cycling as a consequence . . .

Kathleen: it's that knotty old problem of how we respond to something of obvious beauty, when we disagree profoundly with or abhor the views or the actions of the person who created it. Eric Gill is a prime example; his work was sublime but who could condone his behaviour? (And did we change the way we responded to his work after the publication of Fiona MacCarthy's biography of Gill, which revealed to the wider world just how he had lived.) I don't have any easy answers to this, by the way. What do others think?

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Thought for life

  • The House of Breath, William Goyen
    We are the carriers of lives and legends - who knows the unseen frescoes on the private walls of the skull?

Thinking about . . .

  • Daniel Klein, Travels with Epicurus
    I too listen to music more and more. Throughout my life, music has stirred me more than any other art form, and now, in old age, I find myself listening to it almost every evening, usually alone, for hours at a time.
  • Julia Blackburn, Thin Paths
    I began writing because I liked to write things down. I learnt foreign languages because they seemed to enter my head by a process of osmosis.
  • Joan Bakewell, Stop the Clocks
    I live contentedly alone. It's better that way and I am often thoughtful about what has been and what might have been. There are many like me.
  • Patti Smith, M Train
    Oh to be reborn within the pages of a book.
  • Patti Smith, M Train
    Why is it that we lose the things we love, and things cavalier cling to us and will be the measure of our worth after we’re gone?
  • Judith Kerr, Observer Magazine, 22 November 2015
    I don't believe in God. I find it much easier to believe in ancestors. I like to imagine they are pointing us in the right direction.

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