online: 22 november 2005
modified: 21, 25 november 2005

21 november 2005 ordinary things

12:35 At the pond in Sandy Road - the first ice of winter. More than 98% of the pond surface is frozen. The ice supports the weight of a duck who is half walking half skating on it... there is a visible mist in the shadow over the water... and large drops of water are hanging from those willow branches that are horizontal, or nearly so.

On the way through Sandy Heath i found again the steep hollow, as deep as a tall tree... it looks barely natural... was it a digging of some kind?

I cross the road to enter the Kenwood estate. Barbara Hepworth's sculpture seems more mossy and the scratched graffiti is still visible... (i thought the graffiti had been cleaned but it hasn't - and the sculpture looks a little more tilted than i remember... but i decide not to inform the people responsible for Kenwood... writing this is enough)

13:45 Wasted half an hour reading a newspaper in the outdoor cafe... but i feel less tired than i did as i walked here.

A helicopter is towing a gigantic flag advertising something - someone says it is advertising an airline - the writing is too small to be read by people with imperfect sight.

Silence. Jays. distant voices, a loud crack (as of a cricket bat and ball) as i stopped to look, listen, just inside the forest, close to the exit at North End.

Several times on this walk i saw and i heard and i felt this same peace, the quiet of woodland, on a sunny day in November.

I came back this way as it's the most direct and i feel a need to sleep this afternoon. But before that, i pause to note these so positive impressions. The stillness of the trees, the fallen leaves, and of the houses (enlarged cottages, amid expensive cars) close to the woods.

Near to Sandy Road, a frosty valley, the grass is still half white in the afternoon... and as i walk on the hillside where the sun is still shining i see insects hovering, and rising and falling as they hover, close to a birch tree.

Why do i persist in noting these ordinary or predictable things? I'm not sure why i do it - but i like both the process and the result!

(these pages are designed to be read with the window set to two-thirds of the screen width)

what's new


daffodil email newsletter

© 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005 john chris jones

You may transmit this text to anyone for any non-commercial purpose if you include the copyright line and this notice and if you respect the copyright of quotations.

If you wish to reproduce any of this text commercially please send a copyright permission request to jcj at