So, to return to my morning adventure . . .
Once I got through Middle Earth and braved the mystery of the world’s end, a few things happened. For one, the little canal that runs below my window widened until it became actually believable as a tributary of the mighty Thames (yes, my fellow Americans, that is pronounced Temmes).
My path continued along the water with woodsiness on my left, the river on my right, and beyond that, a wide and wild meadowland. Well . . . . maybe it looked exceptionally wide and wild covered in mist. But regardless, it was lovely.
And then, I stumble upon these guys:
Yes. This happened. And you’ve got to admit, it is a little bit pretty.
That’s a romantic* landscape painting waiting to happen.
And then, it actually got sweeter.
In the grass facing the river sat a quiet wooden bench with engraving on the top. I approached it and read that it was set there by a local couple in honor of fifty years of marriage, and counting.
On the back was carved a phrase of poetry.
Sweet Thames Run Softly.
I later learned it’s from this poem: http://www.englishverse.com/poems/prothalamion
You understood every word of that, right?
Good. Neither did I.
(I think it was written in honor of the wedding of somebody famous; the point is marriage and sweetness and the Thames.)
Even I was forced to admit that’s a little bit beautiful. I don’t even know if those people are still alive (the fifty-year bench was about fifteen years ago), but I think they must have been lovely.
And any reason to pause and enjoy this view . . .
well, I’m in favor.
Sweet Thames, run softly, and softly on. =]
*The use of the word “romantic” in this situation does bear an element of poetic irony, unless of course your idea of romance is wandering semi-rural Oxfordshire all by your lonesome in the freezing cold, wearing a bulky shapeless purple jacket, clumpy boots, and a camera bouncing around your neck as if to say “hi, I’m a tourist!”, and by now with thoroughly numb ears and toes, and very much wanting your breakfast. Adventure and worthwhile and enjoyable, absolutely. Comedy, maybe. Romance . . . only if you’re just looking at the pictures. ;]
PS. by now you might be thinking that’s about enough pictures from one morning. I’m beginning to think so myself. But I divided them up into their separate blog posts, and we’re not done yet. So just bear with me another day or two, and then we’ll get back to ordinary blog content . . . such as “I love C. S. Lewis” and things like that.
PPS. ^ Totally true, by the way. Till We Have Faces blows my mind more every time. Stay tuned. =]