Wednesday, 23 March 2016

Herry's Journal Index

Favourite Poetry - The North Ship
Favourite Poetry - Akhmatova
Favourite Poetry - Pablo Neruda
Edna St Vincent Millay - Love is is not All
Edna St Vincent Millay - Eight Sonnets V
Edna St Vincent Millay - Dirge Without Music
Favourite Poetry - Wind
Favourite Poems - Ithaca
Favourite Poems - Kindness
Favourite Poems - C9th Chinese Poem on Old Age
Favourite Poems - Beloved Earth 
Favourite Poems - Animals
Favourite Poems - Stag's Leap
Favourite Poems - The Wilderness
Kei's Poetry - Ego Sum
Kei's Poetry - The Dressing Table
Kei's Poetry - For Obachan
Favourite Carols
Favourite Songs - Kathleen Ferrier 'Land of Hope and Glory'

The Story of the Fox (The Little Prince) 
Favourite Writings - Beyond Euphrates
The Dazzling Fluidity of Days
Favourite Writings - The Lycian Shore
Favourite Writings - More Freya Stark
Favourite Books - 'Wait For Me' by Debo Devonshire
Favourite Writings - Jalaluddin al-Rumi
The Stanzas of Dzyan
Astravakra Gita
I Am Shiva
Jane Austen
The Song of the Weather
The Snow Country
The Forms of Love
The Scientist and the Universe
The Scientist and the Universe II
Ruskin on Pugin's Conversion to Roman Catholicism
100 Books Famous in Children's Literature
100 Books Famous in Children's Literature - the List
Vogue's Book of Houses, Gardens and People
A Study of History
A History of Intimacy
Wise Advice - Sally Brampton
More Wise Advice - Sally Brampton
The Book of Kells
Watching The English

Fracking - a Real and Present Danger
Stockbridge and the Storms of February 2014
Grave Threat to Longstock and Stockbridge from Developers 
Destruction of the Winchester College Wingnuts
Falloden Nature Reserve Closed to Walkers
The Curious Case of the Middle Lane
The Curse of Road Noise
The Poison of Bonuses
Inequality - A Growing Problem
Illogical Arguments
Games People Play
Slideshows and The Little Prince
The Dazzling Fluidity of Days
Early June Morning
Geography and How We've Lost It
The Highway Code in 100 Words
The Joy of Cricket
Leonard Cohen The Master
Favourite Songs - Leonard Cohen
The Joy of YouTube
Thoughts on SOPA and PIPA
Farewell Tempo
Why I Prefer Pubs to Restaurants 
Slideshows and The Little Prince
Treasure Island and the Avoidance of Tax

Obituaries and Eulogies
Dirge Without Music
Rosie Jenks 1943 - 2005
Gopika Fraser 1965 - 2009
Norman Buckingham 1918 - 2010
The Rev Hamilton Lloyd 1919 - 2011
Suzanne Lloyd 1923 - 2011
Sally Macpherson 1940 - 2012
Nick Duke 1945 - 2013
S Venkiteswaran 1941 - 2013
Joanne Louise Taylor (Jo Johns) 1939 - 2014
Ernie Stiles - 1941 - 1914
Lucie Skipwith 1942 - 2014
Annie May Spawton 1944 - 2014

Herry's Trinity House Retirement 2006
Herry's Tokyo Retirement 2006
Herry's Beijing Retirement 2006
Herry's Office Retirement 2006
Herry's 70th Birthday Party July 2015
Lawford Lunch at the Drapers' Hall 2014
Winchester College 50 Years On Dinner 2014
Wellbeing of Women Christmas Fair at the Drapers' Hall 2014
Wellbeing of Women Christmas Fair at the Drapers' Hall 2013
Wellbeing of Women Christmas Fair at the Drapers' Hall 2012
Wellbeing of Women Christmas Fair at the Drapers' Hall 2011
Wellbeing of Women Christmas Fair at the Drapers' Hall 2010
Wellbeing of Women Christmas Fair at the Drapers' Hall 2009
The Royal Hospital Carol Service 2009
The Royal Hospital Carol Service 2010
The Royal Hospital Carol Service 2011
The Royal Hospital Chelsea Dinner 2010
Fine Cell at the V&A
Fine Cell at the Drapers' Hall
Fine Cell at the Leathersellers' Hall 2009
Fine Cell at the Leathersellers' Hall 2009
Fine Cell at the Glaziers' Hall
The Drapers' Almshouses
Drapers' Almshouse Outing to Winchester 2009
Drapers' Almshouse Teaparty 2007
Drapers' Almshouse Teaparty 2008
Thomas Miller Carol Service 2008
Thomas Miller Carol Service 2009
Thomas Miller Carol Service 2010
Thomas Miller Carol Service 2011
Thomas Miller Carol Service 2013
The Mission to Seafarers Carol Concert 2008
The Mission to Seafarers Carol Concert 2009
The Mission to Seafarers Carol Concert 2010
Stockbridge Christmas Evening Shopping 2014

Travel and Places

Favourite Cities - Beirut
Memories of the Taj
Timeless India
India - the Cradle of Language, Astronomy and Science
Russia - The Wild East
Favourite Places - Palace Hotel, Tokyo
Favourite Places - Winchester Cathedral
Favourite Places - Wells Cathedral
Favourite Places - Coventry Cathedral
Coventry's Awe-Inspiring Cathedral
Coventry's Awe-Inspiring Cathedral II
Coventry Cathedral - the Sutherland Tapestry
Coventry Cathedral Golden Jubilee
Coventry Cathedral Carol Concert 2013
Favourite Places in Autumn - Japan
Old Swan House History
Christmas Scenes in London
Christmas Scenes 2008
Mottisfont Abbey in Winter
More Frosty Walks
Favourite Houses - Hinton Ampner
Favourite Places - The East Banqueting House
Favourite Restaurants - The River Cafe
Farewell Robert Le Pirate
The Murphy's and the French Riviera
Drapers' Almshouse Outing to Winchester 2009
Japan - Imabari and the Kurushima Strait
Japan - Early Morning Chimes
Hymn to Dear Japan March 2011
One of Hutton's Glass Screen Angels in Hampshire
The Great Churches of the City of London
The Herbert Art Gallery and Museum, Coventry
The Herbert Art Gallery and Museum, Coventry Reopening 2008
John O'Donohue at Glenshal Abbey
Elmore Abbey

Gardens and Flowers
Cascades Flower Arrangement Exhibition in Winchester Cathedral
Old Swan House Garden Open for the NGS 2015
Chelsea Flower Show 2014
Favourite Gardens - Ashtall Manor
Favourite Gardens - Bere Mill in Spring
Favourite Gardens - Adwell
Favourite Gardens - Hinton Ampner
Adwell Garden Fair
The National Gardens Scheme
Glorious Gardens in the National Gardens Scheme
The Secret Gardens of Spitalfields
Autumn Colours in Kyoto
Autumn Beeches
The Orangery in Winter
Snow in April
Favourite Views - Koko at The Orangery
Favourite Views - Fields of Barley
Favourite Gardens - The Buildings in Autumn 
Favourite Gardens - The Buildings, Broughton
Old Swan House Garden
Old Swan House Gardens Open for the NGS 2015
Old Swan House Garden in June 2015
Old Swan House Garden in Summer and Autumn
Old Swan House Garden in July
Old Swan House Garden in June
Making the Garden at Old Swan House
Old Swan House Garden Open for the NGS 2015
Chelsea Flower Show 2007
Chelsea Flower Show 2008
Chelsea Flower Show 2010
Chelsea Flower Show 2011
Chelsea Flower Show 2012
Chelsea Flower Show 2013
Chelsea Flower Show 2014

Paintings and Photographs
St Laurent and Pierre Berge Collection
Saatchi Gallery - New Art from India
Saatchi Gallery - New Art from China
Saatchi Gallery - New Art from the Middle East
Anish Kapoor's Exhibition
Anish Kapoor in Kensington Gardens
Horst at the V&A - Photographer of Style
An Inland Voyage at the Herbert Art Gallery and Museum
Ibrahim El-Salahi at the Tate Modern
Gaugin at the Tate Modern
Francis Bacon Exhibition at the Tate
The Tate Modern's 10th Anniversary
Picasso Exhibition at the National Gallery

Food and Wine
Wine Writings
The Joy of Breakfast
Favourite Recipes - Dark Chunky Marmalade 

Favourite Blogs
Favourite Blogs - Spitalfields Life
Favourite Blogs - Neilbabble

Favourite Gardens - Hinton Ampner

'At Hinton, I am inclined to believe that the most attractive area is the sward of plain grass between the church and the house with the tall jade-green stems of beech trees rising beyond it. There is a spaciousness and tranquillity here which my more elaborate efforts elsewhere have not achieved.' - Ralph Dutton.

Although much of the garden is lovely, I agree with Dutton that the best part is the 'ungardened' view between the house and the church where the ancient beeches preside over the smooth sweeps of lawn. Much of the garden is on clay which is easily dried out by the wind, so that topiary and areas such as the Dell, full of mature trees and shrubs, are more successful.

I do agree with Dutton, though, when he writes: 'I have learnt during the past years what above all I want from a garden and that is tranquillity.'

The house is wonderful, having relatively few perfectly proportioned principal rooms, all beautifully decorated in Dutton's precise neo-Georgian style.

The Entrance Hall

The South Drawing Room

The Dining Room

Breakfast laid out in Ralph Dutton's bedroom
For more photos, click here

Friday, 4 March 2016

Favourite Paintings - Hilma af Klint

Hilma af Klint - Group IV No 3 The Ten Largest -  Youth 1907
A Swedish artist and Theosophist who I had never heard of until the exhibition at the Serpentine Gallery, is probably the first pure abstract artist. The painting above was painted in 1907, before others such as Kandinsky.

For a brief biography, see here

See more of her paintings here

Saturday, 23 January 2016

The Forms of Love

Love comprehends the complexity of human relationship in all its forms. All of us hold feelings for others, but these feelings differ according to the people involved and the circumstances under which we interact. In the English language there is only one word to describe all of them: Love.

It wasn’t always so. The Ancient Greeks had around thirty words to describe Love in all its shades and complexities. The most easily recognizable of these forms are generally accepted to be the following seven:

Agape – the love of humanity (also known as ‘Love without desire’)
The kind of love which makes us sad when we hear of a crisis in another country (or our own); that makes us give our time or money to charity; and makes us feel connected to people we don’t know simply on the basis of our shared experience as human beings.

Storge – family love
The love a parent or grandparent has for a child, or the love a child has for a favourite aunt or uncle. Equally, the love a foster parent feels for children in his/her care. Also of course the love between siblings.

Pragma – love which endures
The love between a married couple which typically develops over a long period of time. This is the love that endures in sickness and in health and is also the love which exists between old friends (of the same or different sexes) and which causes one to care for another in later life.

Philautia – self-respect
The love we give to ourselves. This is not vanity, like narcissism, but our joy in being true to our own nature and values. It gives us the strength to care for ourselves so that we can in turn care for others.

Philia – shared experience
The love we feel for people we combine with to achieve a shared goal – our fellow workers, the players in a team or soldiers in an army.

Ludus – flirting, playful affection
The feelings we have when we play at what it might be like to be in love with someone.

Eros – romantic and erotic love
The one which is most often thought of as love but is really based on sexual attraction. It can turn into other kinds of love – like pragma – but it starts as romance.

Wednesday, 20 January 2016

Favourite Quotations - Oscar Wilde


“I find it harder and harder every day to live up to my blue china.”

Friday, 25 December 2015

Favourite Writings: Jalaluddin Al-Rumi

“Let yourself be silently drawn by the strange pull of what you really love. It will not lead you astray.” 
“The wound is the place where the Light enters you.”
“These pains you feel are messengers. Listen to them.”
“You have to keep breaking your heart until it opens.”
“The moon stays bright when it doesn’t avoid the night.”
“What hurts you, blesses you. Darkness is your candle.”
“Don’t turn away. Keep your gaze on the bandaged place. That’s where the light enters you.”
“If you are irritated by every rub, how will you be polished?”
“Don’t grieve. Anything you lose comes round in another form.”
“Forget safety. Live where you fear to live. Destroy your reputation. Be notorious.”
“Stop behaving small. You are the universe in ecstatic motion.”
“Become the sky. Take an axe to the prison wall. Escape.”
“Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself.”
“Let yourself be silently drawn by the stronger pull of what you really love.”
“When you do things from your soul, you feel a river moving in you, a joy.”
“There is a candle in your heart, ready to be kindled. There is a void in your soul, ready to be filled. You feel it, don’t you?”
“Only with the heart can you touch the sky.”
“This is love: to fly toward a secret sky, to cause a hundred veils to fall each moment. First, to let go of life. Finally, to take a step without your feet.”
“You were born with wings, why prefer to crawl through life?”
“Be like the sun for grace and mercy. Be like the night to cover others’ faults. Be like running water for generosity. Be like death for rage and anger. Be like the Earth for modesty. Appear as you are. Be as you appear.”
“Ignore those that make you fearful and sad, that degrade you back towards disease and death.”
“Set your life on fire. Seek those who fan your flames”
“Be empty of worrying. Think of who created thought! Why do you stay in prison when the door is wide open?”
“Put your thoughts to sleep, do not let them cast a shadow over the moon of your heart. Let go of thinking.”
“This being human is a guest house. Every morning is a new arrival. A joy, a depression, a meanness, some momentary awareness comes as an unexpected visitor…Welcome and entertain them all. 
Treat each guest honorably. The dark thought, the shame, the malice, meet them at the door laughing, and invite them in. Be grateful for whoever comes, because each has been sent as a guide from beyond.”
“In Silence there is eloquence. Stop weaving and see how the pattern improves.”
“Silence is the language of God, all else is poor translation.”
“All day I think about it, then at night I say it. Where did I come from, and what am I supposed to be doing? I have no idea. My soul is from elsewhere, I’m sure of that, and I intend to end up there.”
“We come spinning out of nothingness, scattering stars like dust.”
“I have lived on the lip of insanity, wanting to know reasons, knocking on a door. It opens. I’ve been knocking from the inside.”
“You wander from room to room hunting for the diamond necklace that is already around your neck!”
“Why are you so enchanted by this world, when a mine of gold lies within you?”
“There is a fountain inside you. Don’t walk around with an empty bucket.”
“Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.”
“That which is false troubles the heart, but truth brings joyous tranquility.”
“What you seek is seeking you.”
“Do you know what you are? You are a manuscript of a divine letter. You are a mirror reflecting a noble face. This universe is not outside you. Look inside yourself; everything that you want, you are already that.”
Jalaluddin al-Rumi

See also, Jalaluddin Al-Rumi

Tuesday, 13 October 2015

Favourite Poetry - Wind


This house has been far out at sea all night,
The woods crashing through darkness, the booming hills,
Winds stampeding the fields under the window
Floundering black astride and blinding wet

Till day rose; then under an orange sky
The hills had new places, and wind wielded
Blade-light, luminous black and emerald,
Flexing like the lens of a mad eye.

At noon I scaled along the house-side as far as
The coal-house door. Once I looked up -
Through the brunt wind that dented the balls of my eyes
The tent of the hills drummed and strained its guyrope,

The fields quivering, the skyline a grimace,
At any second to bang and vanish with a flap;
The wind flung a magpie away and a black-
Back gull bent like an iron bar slowly. The house

Rang like some fine green goblet in the note
That any second would shatter it. Now deep
In chairs, in front of the great fire, we grip
Our hearts and cannot entertain book, thought,

Or each other. We watch the fire blazing,
And feel the roots of the house move, but sit on,
Seeing the window tremble to come in,
Hearing the stones cry out under the horizons.

Ted Hughes (1930 - 1968)

There is a marvellous BBC documentary on Hughes which should be watched 

Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Favourite Books - Wait For Me by 'Debo' Devonshire

Ashtall Manor
Wait For Me by the youngest of the Mitford sisters, Debo Devonshire, is a delight, describing their lives and as well as hers in a warm and humorous way. It is a life full of public service as well as glamour and beauty and she writes simply and movingly about hers and her family's many tragedies.

Delightful stories abound: her irascible father walking to the Army & Navy Stores in Victoria with a lurcher and labrador at his heel and have them sit in the entrance.

Eddy Devonshire tying flies and lying in the bath imaging that he was a salmon while Edward, the butler, pretending to be a fishing rod, jerked them over his submerged head.

Tom Egerton (a friend of Andrew's) being famous for rescuing the marmalade from the officers' mess at the Siege of Tobruk.

'When Uncle Harold [Macmillan] was very old he came to stay for weeks on end. I met him one afternoon in a passage looking rather anxious and forlorn. 'The trouble with this house,' he said, 'is that you have to throw double sixes to get out'.

James Lees-Milne advocating friendship with Germany and her father turning him out of the house. 'Poor Jim went to his motorbike but it was raining hard and would not start. In despair he found the back door and and was rescued by Mabel (a parlourmaid) who hustled him upstairs . As he was creeping out of the house the next morning, he met her father. 'Good morning' he said. He had forgotten the whole episode and offered Jim our usual generous breakfast. 

Her mother believed in wholegrain, stone-ground bread - 'nothing added and nothing taken away.' She was critical of Lord Rank, 'the wicked miller' and regarded his ghost-white loaves and pale brown Hovis a confidence trick because because the germ of the wheat had been removed.  

Her husband, Andrew Devonshire was painted by Theodore Ramos (as was Ayako).

For me too it was particularly interesting to read about her early life at Ashtall Manor, where my step-grandfather Sir Alfred Herbert lived and the Mitfords acquired after he moved to Dunley.

Monday, 20 July 2015

Old Swan House Garden in July

I had thought that the garden would look near its best in June, when the euphorbias and roses were out, but in fact it seems to be flowering better in mid July, and the grasses are better too as they have gone from being green to golden, and so look much lighter. My neighbours buddleija adds a strong burst of colour now as well.

For more photos, click here

Saturday, 11 July 2015