Sunday, 16 February 2014

Time and tide

"February 14th:  Have won first prize in Time and Tide competition, but again divided.  Am very angry indeed, and write excellent letter to the Editor under false name,  protesting against this iniquitous custom.  After it has gone, become seriously uneasy under the fear that use of false name is illegal.  Look through Whitaker, but can find nothing but Stamp Duties and Concealment of Illegitimate Births, so abandon it in disgust.
Write to Angela -- under my own name -- to enquire kindly if she went in for the competition.  Hope she did, and that she will have the decency to say so.

February 16th:  Informed by Ethel, as she calls me in the morning, that Helen Wills has had six kittens, of which five survive.
Cannot imagine how I shall break this news to Robert.  Reflect -- not for the first time -- that the workings of Nature are most singular.
Angela writes that she didn't go in for competition, thinking subject puerile, but that she solved 'Merope's' Crossword puzzle in fifteen minutes.
  (N.B.  This last statement almost certainly inaccurate.)"

Diary of a Provincial Lady   E.M. Delafield

Wednesday, 5 February 2014

The Chinese jar

"Words move, music moves
Only in time; but that which is living
Can only die.  Words, after speech, reach
Into the silence.  Only by the form, the pattern,
Can words or music reach
The stillness, as a Chinese jar still
Moves perpetually in its stillness."

From 'Burnt Norton',  Four Quartets   T.S. Eliot 

Sunday, 2 February 2014

The poets

"And so I bound my verse into a book,
The Best of Betjeman, and handed it
To one who, I was told, liked poetry--
The American master, Mr. Eliot."

From Summoned by Bells  John Betjeman