Sunday, 25 June 2017

Beach Mirror

Dear Reader,

                                                                                      Carpet bags

 On June 24th, 1874,  Francis Kilvert wrote in his journal  : 'Went to London by the 11.5 mail.  I left my carpet-bag at the Paddington Cloak Room and went straight to the Academy exhibition at Burlington House which I reached shortly before 4 o'clock.  There was a great press of people, 100 or more, round Miss Thompson's famous picture  'Calling the Roll after the battle of Inkerman'.  A policeman stands on duty all day by this picture from 10 o'clock till 6 in the evening saying, "Move on ladies.  Ladies, please move on".  I met Teddy in the Exhibition and we dined together at the Criterion.  Not a bed to be got at the Great Western Hotel, so I put up at the Norfolk.'

The carpet bag is a travelling bag made of carpet, usually from an oriental rug.  It was a popular form of luggage in the United states and Europe in the 19th century.  Invented as a type of baggage light enough for a passenger to carry, like a duffle bag, as opposed to a wooden or metal trunk which required the assisstance of porters.   In 1886, the "Scientific Amercan" described it as old-fashioned and reliable:  the carpet bag "is still unsurpassed by any, where rough wear is the principal to be studied.  Such a bag, if constructed of good Brussels carpeting and unquestionable workmanship, will last a lifetime provided always that a substantial frame is used."  I would love to own a carpet bag, it looks so exotic, beautiful, and beckons me to romantic places I would like to visit.

The latest news on the seagulls misbehaviour is that they have been swooping on children at a school in North Wales, frightening them and their parents.  However, they need not worry unduly as the local council is "looking into it".

Beach Mirror

I see myself, a young woman,
recognize the long skirt,
the three blonde children,
one on her hip,
two holding hands,
all laughing, hugging, arguing,
her hair dancing in the wind.

Swirling thoughts about time past
consume me.
I kick at pebbles,
pick up oyster shells,
gaze at the everlasting point between sea and sky.

I have aged, certainly,
but, feeling the warmth of the sun,
watching the sea and the tides,
it seems these things
are ever the same as they were,
all those years gone by.

Very best wishes, Patricia


Anonymous said...

If Kilvert was travelling to London from Clyro, he made jolly good time. You could scarcely travel that distance today in that time. Perhaps it was the night mail?!

Another lovely poem about the beach and the sea for which you seem to have a special affinity. What magic you conjure. X!

Jess said...

What a touching poem! Beautiful and nostalgic. I think we all have moments of flashbacks like that and they are real to us like the present.

Rebecca said...

You capture the feeling of being in search of a lost time. Thank you.

Unknown said...

Thank you and hope you keep posting your beautiful,