Friday, 17 December 2010


Back towards “the scene of fire”, founded as a suburb of Hradčany [Castle District] in the 14th century, burned down during the Hussite Wars, in the great fire of Prague in 1541 and once again during the War of the Austrian Succession in 1742. Here the fire in the windows is of the setting sun under the gloom of heavy rain showers. 10 April.

Sunday, 12 December 2010

Shadow branches

Thames Path, Binsey Green, 8 April.

Felled poplars

Binsey Green, 8 April.

Binsey Poplars (Felled 1879)

MY aspens dear, whose airy cages quelled,
Quelled or quenched in leaves the leaping sun,
All felled, felled, are all felled;
Of a fresh and following folded rank
Not spared, not one
That dandled a sandalled
Shadow that swam or sank
On meadow and river and wind-wandering weed-winding bank.

O if we but knew what we do
When we delve or hew—
Hack and rack the growing green!
Since country is so tender
To touch, her being só slender,
That, like this sleek and seeing ball
But a prick will make no eye at all,
Where we, even where we mean
To mend her we end her,
When we hew or delve:
After-comers cannot guess the beauty been.
Ten or twelve, only ten or twelve
Strokes of havoc únselve
The sweet especial scene,
Rural scene, a rural scene,
Sweet especial rural scene.

-- Gerard Manley Hopkins