This Other Eden: A Country Diary


Drifting in moonlight / the dunes sing their songs. / Wings of old battles / fly all night long. / Cry of the seagulls, / curse of the ghosts; / aches of dead warriors / scar this old coast. From ‘Song for Northumberland’ by Keith Armstrong. Returned home from a week away at the coast … Continue reading Coasting

Summer Land and Water

The inhabitants of this county are plain, honest, and hospitable, but unpolished, and reserved in conversation. They entertain a kind of indifference for the rest of the world, owing, probably, to the good opinion they entertain of their own portion of it.  John Strachey 1737 For decades, journeying back and forth to the homeland in … Continue reading Summer Land and Water

Blithe Spirit and Dead Nettles

    Hail to thee, blithe Spirit! / Bird thou never wert / That from Heaven, or near it / Pourest thy full heart /In profuse strains of unpremeditated art. (From: To A Skylark by P B Shelley) What a cold hearted wet May we’re enduring, most unfavourable after a frosty dry April. But there is … Continue reading Blithe Spirit and Dead Nettles

May Follows

And after April when May follows / And the whitethroat builds and all the swallows  [From: Home Thoughts from Abroad by Robert Browning] Summer has not got a foot in the door until the swallows arrive back from Africa. They usually congregate in large numbers a quarter of a mile away at Southridge farm by … Continue reading May Follows


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