Sleepover 🧸

Joyous laughter watching old Pingu films, and many a nugget of wisdom has come Poppa’s way today – away on sleepover with young grandchildren. But the best counsel of the day, in the family bathroom of their new home: ‘wash your worries away’

Update: I’ve been trying to recall the name of the song evoked by ‘wash your worries away’ – and it’s come to me: the lovely Dick Van Dyke rendition of Hushabye Mountain. Alice Fredenham’s cover of the song is here – hauntingly beautiful, I think …


Sing something simple

Even the simplest of gardens bring so much pleasure and it’s funny, isn’t it, how memories of things long past come to mind when we’re pottering? This afternoon I found myself humming the theme song of a Sunday afternoon radio programme I remembered from boyhood:

We’ll sing the old songs
like you used to do,
We’ll sing something simple for you,
something for you.


Darting housemartins are back and nesting in the eaves here.

Zonked 🥱

Photo at Pexels

Absolutely zonked today – complete with headache arrived out of nowhere. By late afternoon I am hugely grateful for home and the prospect of an early night. Deeply mindful of the fleeing and the weary …


Lanterns and looking

Wow! Today is much, much lovelier than the BBC’s weather forecast had suggested it might be. I’m ceaselessly amazed (as you’ll have noticed 😉) by what sunshine and a blue sky does to my little garden space.

On another note, I dreamt last night (again) of Emily Dickinson and her little oil-lamp-lit writing table in Amherst. Waking, this morning, I wondered why? And the first thing I spotted in my instagram feed (from @poetryisnotaluxury) was …

… perhaps that’s what all of us are doing when we’re asleep? Or awake?

Emily Dickinson’s writing table
photo at

The sharing

Tonight I want to say a big thank you to the friends in my life (who know who they are, and only some of whom are named hereunder) who share their reading with me – and sometimes, wonderfully, their thoughts about their reading. I often contemplate what Mary Oliver called my / their / our

place in the family of things

– and I think it a marvellous reality that family and friends are often connected and inspired by the same authors, who are themselves connected souls ‘in the family of things’ – close friends the late John O’Donohue and poet David Whyte were like brothers, for example.

We do great service when we bring to each other’s attention the wisdom of human encounter. Thank you LF for today’s ‘constellating’ from David W; thank you LW for pure gift from John O’D; and thank you DK for valued intro (link) to Rachel Cusk –

We currently have a poor appetite for living, a result of being force-fed with experiences that have not agreed with us



To say that Edinburgh somehow draws me would, I guess, be something of an understatement. Waking early this bright Sunday morning in Lakeland I popped out for a coffee and somehow – by an accident? – as my youngest used to say, wound up two and a half hours away on the beach in Edinburgh. Breakfast at the beach café, and a contented hour or so watching brave wild swimmers and cloudscapes, turned out to be the perfect antidote to yesterday’s admin day. Back in Lakeland now, car washed and polished, perhaps I’ll mow the lawn to celebrate!