Sunday 17 April 2016

In One Place

As one who has lived for the past four decades (and for much of the previous two) within the same square mile of suburban demiparadise, I am naturally an advocate of staying put in one place. These lines by a great poet of place, Constantin Cavafy, sum up perfectly how, by staying put, we gradually transform and enrich the place we are in, as it transforms and enriches us...

In the Same Space
The setting of houses, caf├ęs, the neighbourhood

that I’ve seen and walked through years on end:
I created you while I was happy, while I was sad,
with so many incidents, so many details.
And, for me, the whole of you has been transformed into feeling.

I came across this poem in a recent post on the wonderful First Known When Lost, a blog that mixes really well chosen poems with equally well chosen pictures to explore various themes (the Cavafy came from  Staying Put). It's been full of discoveries - and welcome rediscoveries - for me, and I recommend it warmly to all who browse here.  


  1. 'by staying put, we gradually transform and enrich the place we are in, as it transforms and enriches us...'

    You may well be right, Nige, in the past sixty years we have flitted hither and yon without gathering much moss. We still have the urge to move on but, at last, AD is catching up.

    Strange, I may well have walked past as I was a'courting on the banks of the Wandle and you were? maybe. Mid 1964 to May 1965, the lady and I nearly married, she sadly died, in Truro in 1994, we broke each others hearts, hers when I returned to the woman I eventually married and mine when I learned that she had died..

  2. A sad story Malty...
    No fish in the Wandle back then of course, just islands of detergent foam and lumps of that weightless white stuff (you'd know what it's called) floating past. No doubt I'd have been moping and mooching in the Grove and failing to pluck up the nerve to talk to girls. The thought of Nige-to-be and Malty-to-be's paths crossing is strangely affecting...