Church of St Mary the Virgin, Adderbury

Church of St Mary the Virgin, East Adderbury.
Church Going
by Philip Larkin (1922-1985)

Once I am sure there’s nothing going on 
I step inside, letting the door thud shut. 
Another church: matting, seats, and stone, 
And little books; sprawlings of flowers, cut 
For Sunday, brownish now; some brass and stuff 
Up at the holy end; the small neat organ; 
And a tense, musty, unignorable silence, 
Brewed God knows how long. Hatless, I take off
My cycle-clips in awkward reverence, 

Move forward, run my hand around the font.
From where I stand, the roof looks almost new-
Cleaned or restored? Someone would know: I don’t. 
Mounting the lectern, I peruse a few 
Hectoring large-scale verses, and pronounce
“Here endeth” much more loudly than I’d meant. 
The echoes snigger briefly. Back at the door 
I sign the book, donate an Irish sixpence, 
Reflect the place was not worth stopping for. 

Yet stop I did: in fact I often do, 
And always end much at a loss like this,
Wondering what to look for; wondering, too, 
When churches fall completely out of use 
What we shall turn them into, if we shall keep
A few cathedrals chronically on show, 
Their parchment, plate, and pyx in locked cases,
And let the rest rent-free to rain and sheep. 
Shall we avoid them as unlucky places? 

Or, after dark, will dubious women come 
To make their children touch a particular stone;
Pick simples for a cancer; or on some 
Advised night see walking a dead one? 
Power of some sort or other will go on 
In games, in riddles, seemingly at random; 
But superstition, like belief, must die, 
And what remains when disbelief has gone? 
Grass, weedy pavement, brambles, buttress, sky,

A shape less recognizable each week, 
A purpose more obscure. I wonder who 
Will be the last, the very last, to seek 
This place for what it was; one of the crew 
That tap and jot and know what rood-lofts were? 
Some ruin-bibber, randy for antique, 
Or Christmas-addict, counting on a whiff 
Of gown-and-bands and organ-pipes and myrrh? 
Or will he be my representative, 

Bored, uninformed, knowing the ghostly silt
Dispersed, yet tending to this cross of ground 
Through suburb scrub because it held unspilt 
So long and equably what since is found 
Only in separation – marriage, and birth, 
And death, and thoughts of these – for whom was built
This special shell? For, though I’ve no idea 
What this accoutred frowsty barn is worth, 
It pleases me to stand in silence here; 

A serious house on serious earth it is, 
In whose blent air all our compulsions meet,
Are recognised, and robed as destinies. 
And that much never can be obsolete, 
Since someone will forever be surprising 
A hunger in himself to be more serious, 
And gravitating with it to this ground, 
Which, he once heard, was proper to grow wise in,
If only that so many dead lie round.

James Douglas Morrison (December 8, 1943 – July 3, 1971)

“I am Dionysus, the child of Zeus, and I have come to this land of the Thebans, where Cadmus’ daughter Semele once bore me, delivered by a lightning-blast. Having assumed a mortal form in place of my divine one,”

The Bacchae by Euripides

Death makes angels of us all and gives us wings where we had shoulders smooth as ravens claws.

“Art and religion, carnivals and saturnalia, dancing and listening to oratory – all these have served, in H. G. Wells’s phrase, as Doors in the Wall.” 
― Aldous Huxley, The Doors of Perception

Iggy Pop – Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night

Do not go gentle into that good night,

Old age should burn and rave at close of day;

Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,

Because their words had forked no lightning they

Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright

Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,

Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,

And learn, too late, they grieve it on its way,

Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight

Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,

Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,

Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.

Do not go gentle into that good night.

Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Dylan Thomas

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Do_not_go_gentle_into_that_good_night

Il faut cultiver notre jardin – Voltaire

Ce bon vieillard me paraît s’être fait un sort bien préférable à celui des six rois avec qui nous avons eu l’honneur de souper.
Toute la petite société entra dans ce louable dessein ; chacun se mit à exercer ses talents. La petite terre rapporta beaucoup.
car, quand l’homme fut mis dans le jardin d’Éden, il y fut mis ut operaretur eum, pour qu’il travaillât, ce qui prouve que l’homme n’est pas né pour le repos.
Cela est bien dit, répondit Candide, mais il faut cultiver notre jardin.

‘You’ll never plough a field by turning it over in your mind.’ #2

before
after

Planted:

Castanea sativa (Sweet chestnut)

Apple trees:

Egremont (M111) – Dessert
Greensleeves (M106) – Dessert
Martin’s Seedling (M111) – Culinary
Ecklinville (M106) – Culinary
Uncle John’s Cooker (M106) – Culinary

Soft Fruit:

x2 Gooseberries – Hinnonmaki Red
x1 Gooseberry – Invicta
x6 Raspberry (Rubus idaeus)
x4 Blackcurrant (Ben Sarek)
x2 Redcurrant (Ribes rubrum)

Constructed:

  1. Windbreak netting
  2. Composting bin

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Quality of life comparison (March 2020)