Friday, September 19, 2014


Well the excitement is over, Scotland still stays within the union, but somehow I think the real adventure would have been an independent Scotland but it is not to be.  I'm all for devolution and that is all I will say on the subject, because I got myself into trouble yesterday over Cornwall.
We had a terrible storms last night down here in the South, lightening lit up the window, thunder roared overhead, I am not sure what it presaged but it was in the South not the North! So I turn to William Morris for reflection, 'The Dream of John Ball', Morris is an exhausting writer, he fills the pages of his books with dreams of a better, medieval way of life, a romantic socialist coupled with a creative hand so I pick the first verses of The March of the Workers to quote which seems so apt......

What is this, the sound and rumour? What is this that all men hear,
Like the wind in hollow valleys when the storm is drawing near,
Like the rolling on of ocean in the eventide of fear?
                           Tis the people marching on.

Whither go they, and whence come they? What are these of whom ye tell?
In what country are they dwelling 'twixt the gates of heaven and hell?
Are they mine or thine for money? Will they serve a master well?
Still the rumour's marching on.

Hark the rolling of the thunder!
Lo the sun! and lo thereunder
Riseth wrath, and hope, and wonder,
And the host comes marching on.

There is change in the air not just for Scotland but for England as well, and a partial reform of our antiquated Houses of Parliament and forms of government is long overdue.  But to return to Morris and his trip to Iceland when he bought back a little Icelandic pony for his children.I see a favourite poem amongst his writings, just love its bleakness, so the first verse, as the robin sings so sweetly outside and I must go and make coffee for LS who is messing around with the new front door installed yesterday by Lester who played Radio 1 continuously all day yesterday!......

Iceland First Seen

Lo from our loitering ship 

a new land at last to be seen; 
Toothed rocks down the side of the firth 
on the east guard a weary wide lea, 
And black slope the hill-sides above, 
striped adown with their desolate green: 
And a peak rises up on the west 
from the meeting of cloud and of sea, 
Foursquare from base unto point 
like the building of Gods that have been, 
The last of that waste of the mountains 
all cloud-wreathed and snow-flecked and grey, 
And bright with the dawn that began 
just now at the ending of day


  1. I was pleased by the outcome as I felt rather sad at the thought of a split, although I really know little or nothing about it. I love that poem.

  2. Morris and D.G.Rossetti can be rather boring in that 19th century manner of writing but I do prefer Morris. Pulled out Christina Rossetti's Goblin Market this morning which is so much more modern but out of character!

  3. Thank you - new poetry for me to enjoy. Tam did Goblin Market at school - strange that it should come from such a rather repressed lady . . .

    I love the idea of William Morris bringing back an Icelantic pony for his children to ride.

    1. I think the pony was called Mouse, must have been strange for him coming to a warmer country.
      Collected a lot of Wm Morris's books, they wrote reams in the 19th Century though...