Daily Archives: August 29, 2012

Suffragette Garden, Mobile Library and Thomas Hardy

1   We spent a pleasing hour or two choosing beautiful plants for my Suffragette Garden, a small plot in the front which we have just finished clearing. Everything growing in this space will be purple, white or green to honour my Great Granny who was a Suffragette. She was imprisoned in Holloway for her ‘misdeeds’ while fighting for the right for women to vote and we are very proud of her. I have had a Suffragette Garden wherever I have lived.

2   Driving home, we saw a Mobile Library van, stuffed with books and with such a pleasing slogan on the back, “The universe at your fingertips!”

The Mobile Library van travelling around Cornwall

3   The following poem by Thomas Hardy was read this morning at a Humanist Funeral we went to. It was a beautiful and very moving ceremony to celebrate the life, and to mark the untimely death, of the son of friends of ours. The same poem was chosen by my parents for their funerals so it has a particular place in my heart.

Afterwards by Thomas Hardy

When the Present has latched its postern behind my tremulous stay,
And the May month flaps its glad green leaves like wings,
Delicate-filmed as new-spun silk, will the neighbours say,
‘He was a man who used to notice such things’?

If it be in the dusk when, like an eyelid’s soundless blink,
The dewfall-hawk comes crossing the shades to alight
Upon the wind-warped upland thorn, a gazer may think,
‘To him this must have been a familiar sight.’

If I pass during some nocturnal blackness, mothy and warm,
When the hedgehog travels furtively over the lawn,
One may say, ‘He strove that such innocent creatures should come to no harm,
But he could do little for them; and now he is gone.’

If, when hearing that I have been stilled at last, they stand at the door,
Watching the full-starred heavens that winter sees
Will this thought rise on those who will meet my face no more,
‘He was one who had an eye for such mysteries’?

And will any say when my bell of quittance is heard in the gloom
And a crossing breeze cuts a pause in its outrollings,
Till they rise again, as they were a new bell’s boom,
‘He hears it not now, but used to notice such things’

4      Just want to add – thinking of friends in the path of Isaac and hoping for everyone’s safety.

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