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Monday …

April 27, 2015

A couple of nice things … first after weeks of agonising over the content of my portfolio for an application to be a member of a local art guild it has been decided and my little walnut tree has a leaf. So for the moment all is well with the world.

For several months I have been working hard on producing all sorts of works in a hope that at least one would be a good example of my artistry.  I want to be recognised as an artist and able to exhibit in local shows.  So the pile of potential grew and with my self doubt.

However, this weekend after much deliberation and some help six pieces have been selected to be mounted and framed and I am happy.  

Strangely and almost more important the little walnut sapling that didn’t show much promise at the end of last year has rallied and has new growth … such joy!

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Silent Sunday

April 26, 2015

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Saturday … and the postman …

April 25, 2015

2015-04-25 08.51.09

This week I have been unwell with random symptoms such as headache, temperature, lethargy, muscle pain, swollen glands etc, after a day or two in bed I went to the doctors. He said I had a virus,with no serious effects and to take pain killers and return to bed.   It has been a horrible few days,  I have longed to get back to normal,  at work to draw and paint the self-pity has worked overtime!

Last night I was able to watch a DVD for and hour or so … a favourite and bound to cheer or at least remind me of real struggle !

Il Postino  … a perfect film.

this poem also puts it all right …

Ode to clothes

Every morning you wait,

clothes, over the chair,

for my vanity,

my love,

my hope, my body

to fill you,

I have scarcely

left sleep,

I say goodbye to the water

and enter your sleeves, my legs look for

the hollow of your legs,

and thus embraced

by your unwearying infidelity

I go out to tread the fodder,

I move into poetry,

I look through windows,

at things,

men, women,

actions and struggles

keep making me what I am,

opposing me,

employing my hands,

opening my eyes,

puting taste in my moth,

and thus,


I make you what you are,

pushing out your elbows,

bursting at the seams,

and so your live swells

the image of my life,

You billow

and resound in the wind.

as though you were my soul,

at the bad moments

you cling

to my bones

empty, at night

the dark, sleep,

people with their phantoms

your wings and mine.

I ask

whether one day

a bullet

from the enemy

will stain you with my blood

and then

you will die with me

or perhaps

it will not be so dramatic

but simple,

and you will sicken gradually,


with me, with my body

and together we will enter

the earth.

At the thought of this

every day I greet you

with reverence, and then

you embrace and I forget you

because we are one

and will go on facing the wind together, at night

the street or the struggle, one body,

maybe, maybe, one day motionless.

Pablo Neruda 1954.

Friday … cordels on the shelf

April 24, 2015

Not in the library today …. but from my bookshelves some little gems that are cheering at the moment  …



Alphabe Thursday … W is for Virginia Woolf

April 23, 2015

acd92edb300229393cced3f8267f6d8bI have looked forward to writing this particular walking experience; is is the reason why I began the alphabet of walking.  

Virginia Woolf, daughter of the great alpinist Leslie Stephen revealed to a friend that she didn’t take to mountains and climbing; why should she, she adds ‘Wasn’t I brought up with alpenstocks in my nursery, and a raised map of the Alps, showing every  peak my father climbed? Of course, London and the marshes are the places I like the best’.  

Her London, had more than doubled in size since Dickens had walked the streets.  Woolf wrote of the confining oppression of ones identity, of the way the objects in one’s home ‘enforce the memories of our own experience’.   So when she set out to buy a pencil in the city one winter’s evening, she did so it seems without fear and her account became one of the great essays on urban walking.

‘As we step out of the house on a fine evening between four and six, we shed the self our friend’s know us by and become part of that vast republican army of anonymous trampers, whose society is so agreeable after the solitude of one’s room’. She went on to say ‘ Into each of these lives one could penetrate a little way, far enough to give one the illusion that one is not tethered to one single mind, but can put on briefly for a few minutes the bodies and mind of others.  One could become a washerwoman, a publican, a street singer’. She walked down the same Oxford Street as Thomas de Quincey, now the shop windows are full of luxury items with which she filled an imaginary house and life only tobe removed again as she returned to her walk and the reason for her activity that evening.  

alphabet thursday

Wednesday’s Wood engraver

April 22, 2015

I am a printmaker working mainly with lino and wood and I struggle with making my work tonal.  My work is usually black and white,  any shape or colour that  appears is always a happy accident. Each time I start a new piece, I practice making marks this way and that in a hope the answer will come … I wait! I recently engraved a cockerel in wood engraving lesson and not matter how I tried the subtle little marks just didn’t do it.  I will at some point go back and look at it again but I am afraid the action will be drastic.

While browsing again through the Poetica da Resistencia aspectos da Gravura Brasileira I found this lovely example of a cockerel by Aldemir Martins (1922-206)  … isn’t it lovely? Cannot wait to see more of his work!

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Weekly photo challenge … Early

April 21, 2015

I am an early bird; each morning except Sunday I rise at 5 am.  I began this ‘habit’ in 1995 when studying for my degree for the Open University.  I was working full time and had a daughter still at home so I would do my study before the family awoke and I needed to get on my bike to do a 20 mile round trip to work.  I did graduate and no longer have to do such a long journey to work, but somehow this early rising bit has remained.  Now, I do yoga, meditate, drink tea and put the final touches to my daily blog post.  

At this time of year, I can, just before 7 am venture out into my little  back yard.  It is a blessed haven where I can sit with the final draft of my first pot of white tea; almost now lost its first rich flavour but still refreshing and warm. My walled garden isn’t not yet graced by the sun, but I, draped in a blanket, sit and wonder about the day ahead , rejoice at the new growth and absorb the peace even as the birds begin to wake noisily in the nearby sycamores.


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