when we were in england a few weeks ago, we stayed at the old parsonage at iffley, near oxford . . . you can see it here; you can even rent it for a holiday, like we did . . . and of course there were lots of lovely things to photograph. we'll do interiors later, but outside, the pretty garden swept down to the Thames (it's called the Isis in Oxford -- have you ever watched inspector morse or the newer inspector lewis on PBS? it seems there are so many murders in oxford for such a small city!!!) so alec, our fourteen year old, took the photos above in the garden . . . aren't they pretty? they really evoke the quiet english garden, like this poem, i think ~
There's nothing very beautiful and nothing very gay
About the rush of faces in the town by day;
But a light tan cow in a pale green mead,
That is very beautiful, beautiful indeed…
And the soft March wind and the low March mistAre better than kisses in a dark street kissed…
The fragrance of the forest when it wakes at dawn,
The fragrance of a trim green village lawn,
The hearing of the murmur of the rain at play—
These things are beautiful, beautiful as day!
And I shan't stand waiting for love or scornWhen the feast is laid for a day new-born…
Oh, better let the little things I loved when little
Return when the heart finds the great things brittle;
And better is a temple made of bark and thong
Than a tall stone temple that may stand too long.