Sunday, 29 August 2010

Of Autumnal Offerings and Vagabonds ...

Hello my Pretties

Thanks for dropping by. How has the weather been in your neck of the woods? Today we had a bit of a respite from all the rain and the sun made an, albeit brief, appearance before being mugged by a marauding pack of rain clouds earlier this evening.

Our day was spent quietly; just pottering around in the garden and making a start on the raised beds. We’re* making them out of used scaffolding planks which are very sturdy and highly unlikely to rot for a good long time - and of course doing our bit for recycling resources and all! One large green point to Peapods!!


*When I say “we” I do actually mean ‘he who is handy with power tools and bits of wood”. I do of course provide invaluable and highly important assistance by way of passing the occasional screw to ’he who is handy with power tools and bits of wood” and making helpful and encouraging comments.

Although it’s a little late in the season for planting much, then at least we can get them ready and filled in time for early next year. I already have some compost which has been rotting down for a good while now and to my delight has turned into the ‘black gold’ that even Monty Don would be proud of!! I shall share some photographs of the work in progress with you very shortly.

My daughter and her boyfriend picked these   <<~~~~    for me today to add to the ones in my freezer. I hadn’t ‘quite’ enough to make a decent quantity of bramble jelly, but these should add to the stockpile quite nicely! Thank you both!

There is a chill-some tang in the air - can you feel it? Autumn is well and truly on its way and I’m sooo looking forward to greeting it with open arms. The late afternoon sunshine is taking on a more golden glow, it seems, and it’s heat is not quite so fierce. I’m waiting with baited breath to see if we have the Indian Summer we sometimes get in September.

I’ve always felt a huge affinity with Autumn. Both my son and I were born in September so it’s a celebratory time all ‘round, but for me it’s also tinged with a sense of something - hmmm… intangible is the only way I can describe it!!

When I was younger (well - y’know - younger than I am now which actually isn’t THAT old. Not really. Not if you say it really quickly!), each Christmas I would receive a copy of “The Fireside Book of David Hope”. This was a little hardback annual of poetry which contained a mixture of old favourites and also lesser known poems. The lovely thing about it was that it was beautifully illustrated with specially commissioned paintings which complimented the poetry perfectly. (There is a reason for this digression - bear with me!)

One of the poems which has stayed with me for all of those years and featured in one of those little books, was ”A Vagabond Song” written by Bliss Carman, an American Poet.

I’m not sure what it was that drew me to it, but it always made me feel a little wistful and put me in mind of a train of traditional gypsy vardos winding their way down a country lane, wisps of grey wood smoke curling upwards in the distance. I shall admit to always having had a daft romantic notion that I had some gypsy blood in me somewhere in my heritage, and this was the reason that I felt a little unsettled at this time of the year.

This is the poem - and although it makes reference to the month of October, I still feel that odd, slightly wistful feeling when I read it, even now ….

A Vagabond Song
Bliss Carman

THERE is something in the autumn that is native to my blood— Touch of manner, hint of mood;

And my heart is like a rhyme,

With the yellow and the purple and the crimson keeping time.

The scarlet of the maples can shake me like a cry

Of bugles going by.

And my lonely spirit thrills

To see the frosty asters like a smoke upon the hills.

There is something in October sets the gypsy blood astir;

We must rise and follow her,

When from every hill of flame

She calls and calls each vagabond by name.

Well my asters aren’t frosty as yet (!) but it’s an evocative poem don’t you think? The siren song of Autumn which stirs something deep within.  Or maybe I'm just a vagabond...

Goodnight Blogging Friends. xx


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