greentapestry : Musing in June

Sunday, 29 June 2014

Musing in June


"How long, thought Eliza, since I have walked in a garden in the evening? She looked through the deeply set iron gate, so narrow and dark in the hollow of the garden wall, and wondered whether or not she would lift the latch and walk in among Olivia's carefully grown flowers...... She opened the gate and walked in.

Down the long paths Eliza walked, where Olivia's delphiniums bore themselves with a pallor and reticence in the night - their blue quenched of its burning. The evening was so still and hot that all colour had soaked into the air except where a point of land, far out to sea, was the daytime blue of a pale delphinium; absurd as a picture of a desert and as silly as it was lovely in the night. Droves of irises were grey-winged, lost in the evening; peonies were white shells round crowns as dark as moss now, only in the daytime golden, and their scent past sweetness. Not a flower scent, but beyond that. A dark scent. A tree of lilac, a broody and exotic white hen, plumed and perfumed, Eliza passed and the nearly sulphurous depths of scent where lupins grew. All colour was lost, soaked into the darkness, breathed out in scent, given to the night, given to Eliza as she walked along, her mind held in an animal delight both sharp and languorous."

- extract from 'Full House' by Molly Keane.

the illustration by Angela Barrett  is from the dust jacket of Susan Hill's book 'Through The Garden Gate' which in turn has a magical chapter entitled 'The Night Garden'.

16 comments:

  1. What a beautiful illustration, it makes you want to go through that gate and see what's in the garden. I think gardens take on a totally different atmosphere in the evening, I don't know if it's the light or the feeling of everything winding down, but it feels totally different to daytime somehow.

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    1. You are right Jo - the garden does take on a completely different dimension at night. Sometimes I feel that it is the best time to be out there.

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  2. I have that Susan Hill book - I shall have to dig it out for a re-read I think. The writing by Molly Keane is lovely I haven't read any of her books but it sounds right up my street. You are going to have to stop putting these quotes on your blog you are costing me a fortune. ha ha. I now have the Clare Leighton book that you quoted from a little while ago - though I haven't had chance to read it yet.

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    1. I have a few of Susan Hill's' books Elaine and have enjoyed them all. I must confess that I've not actually read Molly Keane's book - just this excerpt. I might yet succumb though and seek out the book. Will try not to lead you into any more temptation - for a while :)

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  3. Lovely One to maybe read in the winter months Thank you Anna

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    1. Thanks for visiting and for your comment Joanne. Yes it does look like good winter fare.

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  4. I have this book! It was given to me years ago and it was only reading this post reminded me. I must dig it out and have a re-read. Thank you.

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    1. Good to hear from you Ronnie. I will have to seek out the book myself as I came across the extract in another book and liked what I read. Hopefully the rest of the book will live up to the extract :)

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  5. Thanks for extending our literary horizons, Anna, the extract being from a book new to me

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  6. What a lovely description of a summer evening in the garden.I haven' t read Full House and now you've made me want to read it. I read Molly Keane' s Good Behaviour years ago. She was quite a character. I thought she was more interested in horses than gardens.

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    1. It's a most evocative description isn't it? As I've said above I have yet to read Molly Keane. I just hope that she lives up to my expectations :)

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  7. I'm not familiar with Molly Keane, but her description of the garden is lovely. She must be a gardener to describe everything so vividly and poetically.

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  8. Sorry, Anna, I'm late getting to your musings in June but they're delightful and so inviting that I will consider getting the book. Perfect read to unwind I should think :)

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  9. Sorry, I'm late in getting to your June musings but they're delightful and inviting and I will consider getting the book - perfect read to unwind I should think :) PS: Pity, I have to write my comments always twice in your blog :(

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  10. That's a wonderfully evocative piece of writing Anna, it leaves such clear images in my mind's eye.

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All your comments are much appreciated and treasured. I wil try to reply to everyone who leaves a comment, but it may take me a few days, especially when I start spending more time in the garden and at the lottie. I know that you will understand :) I am sure that I will also visit your blog if I have not already done so. If you have any specific questions I will either reply to them here or you can email me at : thegreentapestry@gmail.com

Namasté

- Anna.