Alexander Averin

Wednesday 29 July 2009

Powis Castle

    Before Summer Rain

    Suddenly, from all the green around you,
    something-you don't know what-has disappeared;
    you feel it creeping closer to the window,
    in total silence. From the nearby wood

    you hear the urgent whistling of a plover,
    reminding you of someone's Saint Jerome:
    so much solitude and passion come
    from that one voice, whose fierce request the downpour

    will grant. The walls, with their ancient portraits, glide
    away from us, cautiously, as though
    they weren't supposed to hear what we are saying.

    And reflected on the faded tapestries now;
    the chill, uncertain sunlight of those long
    childhood hours when you were so afraid.

    Raine Marie Rilke
    Translated by Stephen Mitchell

Dear Diary,

I must apologise for not blogging for ages. Life got in the way as it often does, along with a change in routine.

Here is my latest effort before I make my way to the Ark.

I have to keep reminding myself it is summer and as I write these words the river is rising, its now earthy brown water is lapping at the bottom of the bridge and is already over the bank in places. It has rained solidly all morning, lightly in the main but with occasional very strong and angry bursts. If we are going to be flooded there is nothing we can do to prevent it; I am quite philosophical now. I can’t remember when I last hung washing out to dry(you might recall that is one of my peculiar pleasures).

So I sit upstairs looking out of the study window and posting you a few summery pics taken last weekend at Powis Castle, near Welshpool. I hope their bright colours will cheer you. It was probably the only sunny day we have had for some time. And would you believe it, though it is a long way from home we met one of our neighbours there. The gardens are beautiful, with gorgeous flowerbeds set on terraces overlooking twenty plus acres of grass and woodland.

I took a few pics of the blossoms.

A shady spot!

A camera-shy mother peahen and her babes

I have taken a couple of weeks off work but my dreams of working in the garden and rewarding myself by sitting on my deckchair by the river with a Good Book have all but vanished. It has even been chilly and extra layers of clothing and our new central heating have been employed at times.

So what have I been doing? I have been chasing the dead - working on our family trees, tying up loose ends and doing some more detective work. Escaping into the past I guess but very enjoyable, albeit extremely addictive. I have found a few gems of information and am still on the case.

I have been reading too and will post next about some of the Good Books that I would force upon you.

I will sign off now as I have to go out this afternoon, I just hope I don’t return to a flooded cottage.

Bye for now,
Go mbeanna Dia duit,


Chris Stovell said...

Good to see you back, Cait. Hope all is well. We've also been totally washed away!

Calico Kate said...

Hello Cait. I love hanging out washing too, (it's the ironing bit I'm not keen on) & if it gets rained on whilst out then it stays there until it's dry again!

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

What a beautiful post! Amazing gardens... how I'd love to wander through those. Your posts have been missed, but I'm glad you've had a couple of weeks off. Sorry about the weather, though. It seems everyone is having crazy weather these days!

By the way... Have you read The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton? I just finished it, and you might like it. Nothing taxing, just a big, ole story.

CAMILLA said...

As ever a beautiful post dear Cait, and what wonderful pictures of the trip you took to Powys, love those gorgeous photo's of flowers Cait too.

I pray that the weather will be more kinder to you, and hopefully you will be able to spend some time in your garden while you are on holiday.

I am still in the middle of tracing my family tree, at times I must admit I have got a tad emotional when I have actually traced a member of my family.

I have the book by Kate Morton, really lovely book.

Thank you for sharing with us Cait.


Bee said...

I do hope your cottage doesn't flood!

We have had rain and more rain, too. It doesn't feel summery in the slightest. As in your lovely pictures, purple seems to be the dominant colour in the flower borders. I haven't used my new garden table at all, but perhaps we will enjoy a sunny September?

ds said...

Glad you are back. Lovely photos--wish I were there. It is pouring here also. Guess there is no escaping the wet this summer!

The bike shed said...

Always wanted to go to Powys Castle. Went to Llansteffan castle yesterday, near Carmarthen; much underrated, in fact very little know.
Weather so fickle here in Wales. It was due to be fine yesterday; it poured. Today it was due to pour; it was fine.I just get on with it.

Looking forward to new book recommendations.

Frances said...

Well, Cait, you know that I have never yet set foot in Wales or in Ireland, and yet, when I read your posts, and see poetry that is by others and from your own hand, I think ... I know this place that Cait writes about.

Sometimes the place is not geography!

Our New York summer has also been strangely wet. June broke records with cool temps and rainfall. July warmed up a bit but the rain still visited, and in the past week has visited with accompanying thunder and lightning. No hail yet nearby, but I have heard reports.

Enough weather. Let me send you best wishes, and let you know how much I do love to read your posts. xo

Pondside said...

Nice to see you back again, Cait. It sounds as though you are having a soggy summer, but managing to make it a productive one, with the family tree research. I hope the sun shines on your part of the world soon.

Twiglet said...

Love the photos of Powis castle. We had a lovely day there when the rhododendrons were out. We were hoping to take friends there yesterday but it poured all day so we enjoyed a late home made lunch and then swapped family tree info instead! Spooky or what?

Pipany said...

Lovely post Cait and I hope all is well. So missing the sun at the moment, but your pictures are just lovely nonetheless x

Elizabeth Musgrave said...

Oh yes, we are wet too. Lovely pictures though.

pinkfairygran said...

I just tried to open BOOKS using that as the link and got a message saying you didn't exist more or less.