Odds & Bobs—A Place for Musings & Jottings


2006

Friday, 27th January 10:53 p.m.

Hillside of Wildflowers

When we hew or delve:
After-comers cannot guess the beauty been.
Ten or twelve, only ten or twelve
Strokes of havoc unselve
The sweet especial scene,
Rural scene, a rural scene,
Sweet especial rural scene.


Binsley Poplars by Gerard Manley Hopkins

One of the founders of the Undiscovered Worlds Press lives in Rose Hill, a quiet and little known (at least as far as maps are concerned) suburb of Sheffield in England. Now, I always think of Sheffield as a tough, gritty, northern industrial city, that has fallen on lean times and as the backdrop of the film, The Full Monty. There is another side though to Sheffield, which we glimpsed in a batch of family photographs sent to us at the end of last year.

Hillside of wildflowers, Sheffield, England—summer 2005

It was the hillside of wildflowers that particularly caught my imagination—the cascading colors and distant billowing clouds. It seemed to me to be a place "eternally existing." The kind of place that people treasure and feel a duty to protect.

Imagine our surprise then when we hear from H, that the local council had mowed over the flowers, creating a wasteland—presumably to make way for some future building development.

Snow falls on Sheffield—winter 2005

Beauty trodden blindly underfoot is nothing new in this world—later H, sent us a photograph of the same place from a different angle, when snow had fallen and the youngsters were out exploring.


Clouds near Sebastopol


Clouds near Sebastopol, California—January 2006

We had gone to Sebastopol on the 21st January 2006. Beautiful long clouds were drifting across the sky. We were passing through countryside dotted with farm buildings, vast fields stretching out to the horizon and leafless trees standing black and dramatic against the sky. The bursts of sunshine made you feel as if spring was on the way at long last—though we must have at least another month of winter ahead of us.


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