RECRAFTING THE WAY THINGS ARE


The heart has a yearning for the unknown, a longing to penetrate the deep shadow and the winding glade, where, as it seems, no human foot has been. The Hills and the Vale (Marlborough Forest) Though it started other-than-consciously when I first dreamed into Lenbach’s Shepherd Boy at the age of 10, it’s no exaggeration […]

MYSTIC JEFFERIES


In The Psychology of Religious Mysticism (1925) James Leuba refers to twenty-six definitions of mysticism including ‘anything marvellous or weird… beyond human reason’ which may well be the standard definition when we’re faced with something which escapes understanding. For his purposes, Leuba settles on a neat uncluttered definition which appeals to me because it can […]

ONWARDS! – with Richard Jefferies… (70)


In Restless Human Hearts (1875), after their trial marriage and disappointing continental trip, Neville and Georgiana are reflecting separately on the concern they feel about their future: Georgie wants the ‘transports of love’ she and Neville had at the beginning of their relationship, while Neville requires something else. “I think,” said Neville, speaking in a […]

Reading Jefferies (70)


Reading a few books for the first time, but mostly re-reading with new eyes what’s been on my shelves for many years, I’ve been struck by the drift of Jefferies’ way of putting things together, his cast of mind, notably his way of making contrasts between this & that: in essays, reportage and novels (where […]