Tag Archives: Kew Gardens

An Unfinished Story

Living, as distinct from literary, speech is continually interrupted, and there is never a single thread.

IMG_5886

What can happen in twenty-four hours may outlast a century.

IMG_5776

Silence can be like a hand extended.  (Or, of course, under different circumstances, a hand cut off.)

IMG_5927

Write by hand with a knuckle bleeding.  Like this blood underlines some of the words.

IMG_6028

Every story is about an achievement, otherwise there’s no story.

IMG_5845

Hope today is a contraband passed from hand to hand and from story to story.

IMG_5990

from John Berger’s Bento’s Sketchbook (Verso 2011)

Advertisements
Tagged , , , , ,

Chokushi-Mon

IMG_5932

freed from all fear of man

You are lost
until the gate
is found

under the Chinese Nettle tree
spangled shade

gravel
raked
just so

island of white
a single stone

king of the garden
a peacock
cloaked in terrible eyes

shining paths
lead up and down

on a gentle rise
shades of pewter
and lichen

grandfather pine
the tallest tree

all of us wishing
for the same thing
I toss in my silver

the only colour
five-petalled mauve

are they flowers
or seeds dusting
the master’s haiku?

cast in bronze
letters I can’t read

the carved bird
forever on the brink
of flight

sprinkled awake
by the circling spray

facts speak
for themselves
no one listens

always stone
that takes us home

pruning the yew
a line of string
precisely level

enough work
today dreaming

may we all live
in houses stronger
than earthquakes

on the Atlas Cedar
new cones ooze resin.

IMG_5943

A nijuuin renga at Chokushi-Mon,
Kew Gardens
on 18th July 2013.

The title is a line from Kyoshi Takahama’s haiku set in the Japanese Landscape at Kew. He composed it there on May 2nd 1936 and it was installed as a feature, in English and Japanese, by his daughter 43 years later.

IMG_5960

There are actually two peacocks although I couldn’t tell the difference between them.  One is called George – presumably after George III, in whose reign so much of Kew as we know it now was established.IMG_5931

Tagged , , , , , , ,

At Kew

20130719-190019.jpg

The environment is our outer skin and we have to look after it. To be able to look after it, we have to understand it, and I understand it by putting my hands on it.
David Nash

20130719-190558.jpg

20130719-190638.jpg

People from a planet without flowers would think we must be mad with joy the whole time to have such things about us.
Iris Murdoch

Tagged , , ,
Advertisements