On 7th and 17th March we listened to several readings on a theme of water whilst we stitched.
First up, please listen to the two wonderful poems by our stitcher Maggie Crompton. The first is called A year beside the river and she has put it together from twelve of many haikus she wrote during 2021. Haikus are the Japanese poetry form that require a poem of 17 syllables in three lines of five, seven and five, and traditionally conjure images of the natural world. Her second poem is a treat, ‘The Water of Life‘ summing up I think all the things we have been talking about in these stitching sessions. Maggie is a wonderful wordsmith and we are so grateful for her sharing these amazing poems.
Maggie also read a poem about snowdrops which Jill had brought in, having had it framed with a picture on the wall for years but not really noticing it.
On the Monday evening I demonstrated the phosphate and nitrate tests currently used by CPRE in their Citizen Science Project. I drew up some Lugg river water in a jug at the Priory Bridge next to the Community Centre where we are stitching.
I showed the detailled drawings by English social historian Dorothy Hartley (1893- 1985) in her book published in 1964 ‘Water in England‘ documenting the smallest details of water management in our country through the ages. Her drawings and observations notice everyday details through to larger management schemes.
I read Dorothy Hartley’s passage called ‘The leading of water over the hills’ which tells of the water diverting skills of the agricultural hillside workers that they took with them in the Industrial revolution to hep drier lands.
I re/introduced the work of Rachel Carson in her book Silent Spring, now sixty years old and her writing ‘A fable for tomorrow’.
I also read Rachel’s words about ‘Ground water’