Monday, June 28, 2010

Summer Afternoon, Summer Afternoon

"In 1897, Henry James leased Lamb House, a villa in Sussex. He bought it a few years later and lived there until his death in 1916. One of his frequent visitors was his close friend the novelist Edith Wharton. In A Backward Glance(1934), Edith Wharton wrote about a day trip with Henry James to Bodiam Castle, near Lamb House: "Tranquil white clouds hung above it in a windless sky, and the silence and solitude were complete as we sat looking across at the crumbling towers, and at their reflection in a moat starred with water-lilies, and danced over by great blue dragonflies. For a long time no one spoke; then James turned to me and said solemnly: 'Summer afternoon — summer afternoon; to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language.'"' The Writer's Almanac, June 24, 2010

The 100+ (F) heat & sudden downpours (& power outages) continue, but the weather is to take a turn towards the fair & unusually clear the next few days here in DC (& beaches). So it may well be that the inn where I'm headed, ruled over by a benevolent Englishwoman, will indeed be rather England-in-the best-of-weather. And I didn't even have to buy a plane ticket.

This is an excuse to post a Walter Crane illustration - I use many on Julie's blog. It's titled Spring, but I think it's summery. Since when do marguerites bloom in the spring in England (or here)? Poor confused man. [second illustration is via here & is not Crane but it suits my whim.]


Brian Miller said...

great the little look into that summer day for them and it is a serene place to be...just a few hours south of you in VA...over 100 as is to fair weather ahead...

Kate said...

Those dresses are so pretty. Yes, a the ideal summer day in England is something to behold. It's very hot over there, though, right now, I see.

Stay cool & calm. (Well...)