Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Autumn...My Favorite Time of Year

To Autumn by John Keats (1795-1821)

SEASON of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees,       
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;  
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,         
For Summer has o’er-brimm’d their clammy cells.

Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;         
Or on a half-reap’d furrow sound asleep,
 Drows’d with the fume of poppies, while thy hook  
Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers:
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
Steady thy laden head across a brook;         
 Or by a cyder-press, with patient look,  
Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours.

Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,—
While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day,         
And touch the stubble plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
 Among the river sallows, borne aloft  
Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;         
Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
The red-breast whistles from a garden-croft;  
And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.

John Keats died in Rome on 23 February 1821 and was buried in the protestant cemetery in Rome. His last request was to be placed under a tombstone bearing no name or date, only the words, "Here lies One whose Name was writ in Water." Severn and Brown erected the stone, which under a relief of a lyre with broken strings, includes the epitaph:

"This Grave / contains all that was Mortal / of a / Young English Poet / Who / on his Death Bed, in the Bitterness of his Heart / at the Malicious Power of his Enemies / Desired / these Words to be / engraven on his Tomb Stone: / Here lies One / Whose Name was writ in Water. 24 February 1821"

He was 26 years old.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

October Reading

With cooler weather arriving, it is time to curl up in front of the fire with a cup of tea or cocoa and select a nice thick book to read. It's funny how I read more non-fiction in the cooler months and save the fluff for summer. Two of three of these books are non-fiction and I am truly looking forward to reading them all.

Nora Ephron, who passed away just in 2012, has a compilation of many of her works collected in The Most of Nora Ephron. What an amazing writer who brought us many humorous and unforgettable stories.

And if you have read my blog from the beginning, you know what a huge Pat Conroy fan I am. I believe he is one of the best writers out there today. He tends to write about my life, the people I grew up with and people who surround me. The South in all it's perfect beauty and hidden shame. The Death of Santini:  The Story of a Father and His Son. 

The third, Behind the Shattered Glass, is a continuation of a fun, cozy mystery series and is always enjoyable to visit with the characters again.

Happy Autumn and Happy Reading!

p.s. Just finished reading This House is Haunted by John Boyne and thoroughly enjoyed it. Very Dickensian!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

It's Autumn...

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Autumn is Coming

Every year when the weather turns cooler, I dig out Fall decorations and pull out books that I enjoy reading this time of year. There are books that need to be read or re-read by the fire or somewhere you can smell the burning leaves and the cool night air catches your breath.

One of those books for me is Washington Irving's The Legend of Sleepy Hollow. It has all of the Autumn requirements. What's your favorite Fall reading?

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Favorite Movie

Moonrise Kingdom

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Gone From My Sight

I am standing by the seashore.
A ship at my side spreads her white sails to the morning breeze
and starts for the blue ocean.
She is an object of beauty and strength,
and I stand and watch
until at last she hangs like a speck of white cloud
just where the sun and sky come down to mingle with each other.

Then someone at my side says, ‘There she goes!
Gone where? Gone from my sight – that is all.

She is just as large in mast and hull and spar
as she was when she left my side
and just as able to bear her load of living freight
to the places of destination.
Her diminished size is in me, not in her.

And just at the moment when someone at my side says,
‘There she goes! ‘ ,
there are other eyes watching her coming,
and other voices ready to take up the glad shout :
‘Here she comes!’

Henry Van Dyke, 19th century

via Kaari Meng in relation to the Sandy Hook tragedy

Elvis Has Been Spotted in Memphis

My sweet friend and her children, who live in Memphis, Tennessee, have been having lots of fun with "Elvis" the elf. He often finds himself in sticky situations.