Thursday, 26 August 2010

coffee spoons

Sometimes it feels like I spend too much time measuring my life in coffee spoons. Wandering around the flat thinking "I really must get out more". Gazing at blank sheets of paper. Idly reaching for the Digestive biscuits.

Meanwhile, it rains and rains, and when it rains especially hard Katie dashes up onto the roof and dances in it, as you do.

It got me thinking of a Michael Longley poem, so I dug it out.


We should have been galloping on horses, their hoofprints
Splashes of light, divots kicked out of the darkness,
Or hauling up lobster pots in a wake of sparks. Where
Were the otters and seals? Were the dolphins on fire?
Yes, we should have been doing more with our lives.
...though I'm not sure about the galloping horses thing. Sounds a bit showy. It reminds me a bit of the sticker you sometimes see on the back of Land Rovers, the one that says ONE LIFE LIVE IT, as though driving to Waitrose in a Land Rover was somehow a more intense experience than doing it in, say, a Nissan Micra. Discuss.

I took some of my pictures down to Minuteman Press in Bedminster, and they scanned them into TIFFs for me. Then the nice folk at Niche Frames in Stokes Croft ("Bristol's Cultural Quarter") ran off some giclee prints for me.

They look very nice. I am pleased.


  1. Katie is a picture of innocence! Very sweet!

    Melissa XX

  2. I remember that roof from last winter. It's so high up, you wouldn't get this cowardly person through that hatch in daylight! (Not without a stiff tot of damson vodka anyway)


  3. Longley and a reference to Eliot? What a wonderful post....all I can say is
    "...beneath the music from a farther room,
    So how should I presume?"

    Thanks you for the oasis in the waste land of another day!

  4. "Who Dares Wins"? AND "Reds" AND topped off with "CantPay/WontPay"... and all in forren parts?
    And you don't get out much?
    I should enjoy an aimless potter on the odd rainy day and nibbling a few digestives after all that subtitled politico-whirligig-ness.

    That is a gorgeous pic of Katie in the rain - that look! Ha! Gorgeous. (Not a coffee-spoon in sight.)

  5. My niece in France used to rush out into the rain like that but then again it was warm rain and at the time quite rare in those parts, I felt quite jealous!

    Caroline xxx

  6. Innocence, Melissa? Katie? -well, perhaps more than she'd like to admit, of course! Thank goodness she isn't 'cool' (and I hope she doesn't get to read this...).

    It doesn't look so bad in daylight, Lucy. I think.

    Thank you, Claire! I once took Michael Longley for a drink, you know, before a poetry reading in Bristol. We drank Bushmills. Several times.

    It was a long time ago, Federay! -funny, I always seem to be more adventurous when I'm out and about. There's something about ships that encourages you to get off them and explore when the opportunity arises...

    I think the last time I welcomed a drenching was somewhere near the Equator, Caroline. It was like being in the shower.

  7. Life is what you make it. I think that Katie is going to make the most of hers.

  8. Lovely Katie rattles the gargoyles up on Schloss Marland!

    I was reminded of the lovely Longley poem this morning when I read Emerson's longish Monadnoc, among whose many quotable lines are:

    "Let not unto the stones the day
    Her lily and rose, her sea and land display;
    Read the celestial sign!
    Lo! the South answers to the North;
    Bookworm, break this sloth urbane;
    A greater Spirit bids thee forth,
    Than the gray dreams which thee detain."

  9. A call to arms, Larry! Thank you. And a poem for a poem; that second line reminds me of this poem by anon. -

    The maidens came
    When I was in my mother’s bower,
    I had all that I would.
    The bailey beareth the bell away;
    The lily, the rose, the rose I lay.
    The silver is white, red is the gold;
    The robes they lay in fold.
    The bailey beareth the bell away;
    The lily, the rose, the rose I lay.
    And through the glass windows shines the sun.
    How should I love, and I so young?
    The bailey beareth the bell away;
    The lily, the rose, the rose I lay.