My new guest is Tim Kevan, author of the Baby Barista blog and two highly amusing (and slightly worrying) books about his life as a barrister, one of which I have reviewed on this blog. He also writes regular legal articles for The Legal Terrier Blog http://www.thelegalterrier.co.uk).
So let’s get into the questions, Tim. What is your favorite poem?
So many poems. One of my favourites is Gerard Manley Hopkins’ ‘The Windhover’ with its incredible language and rhythm along with the sheer wonder at the beauty of nature which is only enriched by the religious allusions. Then there’s the pull of the sea in John Masefield’s ‘Sea Fever’ and the heart-wrenching tale of humility and kindness of Eleanor Farjeon’s ‘Mrs Malone’. I like the sentiment in WH Davies’ ‘Leisure’, the image of the stream falling down to the sea in Coleridge’s ‘Kubla Khan’ and not forgetting AA Milne’s wonderful ‘Now We Are Six’.
Several great poems, thanks. Here is ‘The Windhover’ – a new poem to me – written in 1877 (so I hope it’s out of copyright)
To Christ Our Lord
I caught this morning morning’s minion, king-
dom of daylight’s dauphin, dapple-dawn-drawn Falcon, in his riding
Of the rolling level underneath him steady air, and striding
High there, how he rung upon the rein of a wimpling wing
In his ecstasy! then off, off forth on swing,
As a skate’s heel sweeps smooth on a bow-bend: the hurl and gliding
Rebuffed the big wind. My heart in hiding
Stirred for a bird, – the achieve of, the mastery of the thing.
Brute beauty and valour and act, oh, air, pride, plume, here
Buckle! AND the fire that breaks from thee then, a billion
Times told lovelier, more dangerous, O my chevalier!
No wonder of it: shéer plód makes plough down sillion
Shine, and blue-bleak embers, ah my dear,
Fall, gall themselves, and gash gold-vermilion.
A lot of people, of course, left North Devon and sailed across the sea to new worlds, and some of them got marooned on desert islands and never came back. So if you could take one book to a desert island, what would it be?
Hm. I think that’s cheating – how do you know which island you’re going to marooned on? I think Robinson Crusoe works well on all of them. Ok, next question – what is your favorite smell?
The sea, roast chicken, surf wax, salt and vinegar steaming off fresh fish and chips, linseed oil on cricket bats, elderflowers in Spring, farmyards, fresh rosemary, wild garlic, honeysuckle, red wine, sloe gin, the list could go on and on…
Surfing, jogging and walking on the beach with my wife Louise and our dog Jack. All fantastic for getting out into the countryside and not really any downside if the conditions are right.
Thanks Tim. I hope you catch lots more good waves like that!
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