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Word From Wormingford

Richard on August 13th, 2016

Ronald Blythe travels to Aldeburgh and joins the suntanned crowd BLISSFUL Mediterranean days, only in Suffolk. Friends from Oxford celebrate them with me at Aldeburgh. I take them to see Benjamin Britten’s grave in the churchyard. Beside him lie Peter Pears and Imogen Holst — the triumvirate who created the festival just after the war, and […]

Continue reading about Word from Wormingford – 12 August 2016

Richard on August 5th, 2016

Ronald Blythe reflects on the country silence and gifts of creation “BE NOT afeard, the isle is full of noises,” says Caliban. And so is my ancient garden. At first, one hears nothing, just the old country silence. And then, like the instruments of an orchestra, the sounds introduce themselves: the summer wind in the trees, […]

Continue reading about Word from Wormingford – 5 August 2016

Richard on July 29th, 2016

The July heat reminds Ronald Blythe of family visits in the past “SHALL I compare thee to a summer’s day?” asked Shakespeare. Impossible. An English summer’s day is unlike anything else in the world. A dragonfly from my old horse pond who has only a day to live wanders past in its deathless way. Black-and-white cat sisters […]

Continue reading about Word from Wormingford – 29 July 2016

Richard on July 23rd, 2016

On a cool evening, Ronald Blythe sits with Mary, Martha, and Alice THE Maltings Farm hayfields were cut yesterday, and now they are being trundled along the horizon in the shape of vast drums. Stripped land is pale and dusty. The sun burns down, and, apart from the haymaking machine, and the everlasting cry of pigeons, there […]

Continue reading about Word from Wormingford – 22 July 2016

Richard on July 15th, 2016

George Herbert’s poems make Ronald Blythe think of St Luke’s Acts WARM, soft summer winds, the ones that rock the barley. They bring back the exhilarating Julys of boyhood. I can feel old Mr Cardy’s crops scratching my bare legs. Or Captain Cardy, as he liked to be called. Although it was incorrect, many temporary officers of […]

Continue reading about Word from Wormingford 15 July 2016

Richard on July 8th, 2016

Ronald Blythe on a poet of Cornwall TODAY, I found myself thinking of my old friend Charles Causley. He’d be looking around my ancient house and saying, But you can’t live here! But I do live here, Charles. With all this garden? Charles detested gardening. When we met in Cornwall, he would take me to see […]

Continue reading about Word from Wormingford – 8 July 2016

Richard on July 2nd, 2016

Ronald Blythe ponders stony issues across the history of the Church I have been thinking this week about all those references to stone in scripture. A long time ago, I wrote a little book to accompany some remarkable watercolours of the building of the new tower of St Edmundsbury Cathedral. The artist was Lillias August, and […]

Continue reading about Word from Wormingford 1 July 2016

Richard on June 24th, 2016

Ronald Blythe muses on the joy of each and every sound I NEVER quite get used to it, the static nature of today’s countryside. Villagers such as John Clare were elaborately seasonal. Every month, every day almost, brought its special tasks, and he could describe them, as the seasons followed each other in their traditional order. […]

Continue reading about Word from Wormingford 24 June 2016

Richard on June 17th, 2016

Ronald Blythe re-reads a diary that is suited to all times of life SOFT summery rain. Blue tits nesting by the brick gate-post. Shrubs heavy with rain, having fallen across the path. Drenched roses. The stream and the guttering in competition as the water dispels. Gentle grey light. Giant weeds. Friends look a little ascant. […]

Continue reading about Word from Wormingford 17 June 2016

Richard on June 15th, 2016

What do we know of the weather and the world, asks Ronald Blythe The weather forecasters wear their best clothes to tell us the worst. That the sun will not shine today. They have no language for dullness. But I have. On the telephone at breakfast, I say what it looks like out of the farmhouse […]

Continue reading about Word from Wormingford 10 June 2016