Sunday, January 10, 2010
Now Stir The Fire....
Now stir the fire, and close the shutters fast,
Let fall the curtains, wheel the sofa round,
And, while the bubbling and loud-hissing urn
Throws up a steamy column, and the cups,
That cheer but not inebriate, wait on each,
So let us welcome peaceful ev'ning in.
Oh winter, ruler of th' inverted year,
Thy scatter'd hair with sleet like ashes fill'd,
Thy breath congeal'd upon thy lips, thy cheeks
Fring'd with a beard made white with other snows
Than those of age, thy forehead wrapp'd in clouds,
A leafless branch thy sceptre, and thy throne
A sliding car, indebted to no wheels,
But urg'd by storms along its slipp'ry way,
I love thee, all unlovely as thou seem'st,
And dreaded as thou art! Thou hold'st the sun
A pris'ner in the yet undawning east,
Short'ning his journey between morn and noon,
And hurrying him, impatient of his stay,
Down to the rosy west; but kindly still
Compensating his loss with added hours
Of social converse and instructive ease,
And gath'ring, at short notice, in one group
The family dispers'd, and fixing thought,
Not less dispers'd by day-light and its cares.
I crown thee king of intimate delights,
Fire-side enjoyments, home-born happiness,
And all the comforts that the lowly roof
Of undisturb'd retirement, and the hours
Of long uninterrupted ev'ning, know.
William Cowper 1731-1800
I am a bear of very little brain this morning so I'm cheating a little by posting yet another poem with some paintings as illustrations. Not very inspired I'm afraid but the cold I'm currently dosing with elderberry rob seems to have deprived me of the power of coherent thought! I shall try and produce something better during the coming week. For now it's on with knitting a nice warm jumper for Gabriel I think. Stephen and his family are on their way to Heathrow at the moment - problems with the non arrival of visas meant they didn't travel last week and their flight now leaves on Tuesday evening. They are going down today and staying two nights in a hotel at Heathrow to be sure of actually getting there, having had to rearrange the flights once they don't want to find that the snow prevents them from getting to the airport. We are apparently due for another lot of snow later today up here in what is currently the Frozen North and I suspect that it might be slow going on the M1 and the M25 today as they were forecasting heavy snow for the southern counties last night. Never mind, every day is another day nearer to Spring and scenes like this!