I will always reply to comments and always re-reply to re-replies.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015


Roderick Robinson recently queried if the verse on my blog head accurately reflected my philosophy for life.
When I started the blog back in 2006 I cast around for what to call it. I reside in Kent, the right bottom corner of the UK which juts closest to Europe. Indeed the word "Kent" descends from ancient Celtic meaning "corner" or "angle". I live in Ashford, very close to my happy hunting ground of Romney Marsh - itself a jutting corner of the larger corner. Hence "Little Corner of the Earth".

That title rang a bell which reminded me of a verse from Richard le Gallienne's rendering of the Rubaiyat of  Omar Khayyam (less well known than the Fitzgerald version, but I prefer it). What more natural than to use that verse in the blog head.

So the last two lines of the verse had immediate appeal and meaning for my philosophy. Then, a few years later, I eventually stopped even part-time work and the first two lines became even more meaningful as I left the hurly burly and rush of the big world and had time for more reflection.

The verse was originally intended as a link to the blog title but, yes, it now does equate to my philosophy for life .
Lost to a world in which I crave no part
I sit alone and listen to my heart,
Pleased with my little corner of the earth,
Glad that I came - not sorry to depart


The Crow said...

I've moved around so often, from childhood to the mid-70s, that I have no "little corner of the earth" to feel about as you do your dear Kent. I am glad for you, but sad for myself. I have lived in this town for 30 years, this state for almost 35, but I still long for someplace I've never had to call home.

I think Kent must be a beautiful part of the world, near the sea. I'm landlocked, which likely accounts for my homeless feelings. I love the oceans, rivers. Aha! There's the solution; time to move again!

Tom said...

I have moved around, in England, Germany and now France. I have never really wanted to move back to London (my home town!). Yet there is a certain feeling, a certain mild nostalgia perhaps, that calls from the south east. But I have to say that whenever I visit the UK it seems to be more and more foreign to me, and I am most certainly not referring here to settlers from abroad. It is as if the only real England I knew and loved exists from pictures and books, a place that has a permanent home in my mind, but nowhere else. And when my mind finally departs, so will the images of England, my England.

Avus said...

Crow: That's the answer then- the sea-side calls!

Tom: The "old Kent" is still here if you know where to look for it. The south of the county and the east - keep away from the motorway corridors or north Kent. London I cannot abide and would willingly pay money not to go there!

valonia said...

It always conjures an earthy wise-ness that reminds me of you (perhaps the Gandalf icon helps).
I used to feel lost in the lands of the south. I felt an alien for many years when I left Yorkshire and ended up on the Thames. Now I feel more at home in the landscape here than I ever did growing up in the north. The people and world around may change, but the riverbank, the river, the boats - they are constant - and I too now have a little not-quite-corner of the earth. I had always wondered about spirit of place.

Avus said...

Earthy - yes. Wise-ness - still working on that!
I guess something from the Wind in the Willows might suit your blog i.e. the famous rat thing about messing about in boats.
I think the "genius loci" is very important and really does exist if you are sensitive to it.
Thanks for visiting - I'll put the kettle on next time.

Roderick Robinson said...

The confusion lies in the first line since "world", as used, could mean the whole world or a part of that world. For you not to crave the world in general might suggest you had given in to accidie, had turned your face to the wall. Happily this is not the case. Married to a Kentish maid, I am well aware of the county's seductions.

Avus said...

RR: Kentish Maid or Maid of Kent? There is a difference (see posted map)

Roderick Robinson said...

I'm well aware.