Tag Archives: poem

Cycling………Freedom!

22 Sep

As you will know if you follow my blog, I walk many, many miles every year and I just love this activity, not only for the amazing countryside and views that can be enjoyed, but also purely for the business of putting one foot in front of the other. I enjoy the process of walking. I have written blog entries on what walking does for me so I won’t repeat that here.

However, there is perhaps one slight shortcoming with walking and that is whilst¬†it keeps you generally fit, it doesn’t give much of a cardiovascular work out unless you are climbing strenuously in the mountains, and Dorset doesn’t have mountains. Because of this, I decided a year or two back that I would power-walk/run at least twice a week in order to get my heart rate up. The problem I discovered with this is that running and arthritic ankles don’t make good bedfellows because running tends to be high impact.

I needed a solution, and that solution was provided by cycling. Now I’ve been a cyclist all my life and in fact I used to race at an amateur level when I was younger but over recent years I have done less, preferring to get out on foot. So a few months ago I dusted off my old racing bike (in fact I have replaced it now) and started to get out on the road a bit more, whilst still maintaining my walking in between of course.

Cycling not only gives you a good workout but it also enables you to cover more ground whist still being in the countryside and in the fresh air. It gives you a great sense of freedom.

So I wrote a poem about itūüôā !

CYCLING

Rest and Be Thankful

Cycling – freedom – on the road,

Cycling – freedom – without load,

Cycling – freedom – in the air,

Cycling – freedom – gets you there,

Cycling – freedom – through the trees,

Cycling – freedom – feel the breeze,

Cycling – freedom – down the lanes,

Cycling – freedom – dodge the rains,

Cycling – freedom – not too fast,

Cycling – freedom – make it last,

Cycling – freedom – without strife,

Cycling – freedom – healthy life,

Cycling……………FREEDOM!

(Copyright The Dorset Rambler)

Thanks for stopping by.

Until next time,
Your friend The Dorset Rambler

If you would like to contact me,¬†my email address is terry.yarrow@gmail.com¬†‚Äď comments and feedback are always welcomed.

All photographs, poems and words in this blog are the copyright of The Dorset Rambler and must not be reproduced without permission.

The Walk Home

3 Sep

Another of my poems which was inspired by a late evening walk on a night when the moon became covered by heavy cloud, throwing everything into darkness. Suddenly sounds of animals and rustling leaves became more mysterious as the imagination took over. I wrote the poem in my mind as I walked.

Shadowyman!

The Walk Home

Gravel crunched in the inky darkness,
Path glowed softly in the light of the moon,
Owl hooted eerily in the distance,
Nervous, wished to be home soon.

Cow lowed deeply in the meadow,
Cat screeched out in the neighbouring barn,
Rat, I thought, had met its maker,
Shivers ran up spine and arm.

Bats flew up high above my head,
Wheeling around to catch their prey,
Crows gave out their last loud ‚Äėcaw‚Äô,
Marking the end of a winter’s day.

Fox rushed by with pheasant in mouth,
Deer stirred softly in the trees,
Rabbits shuffled through the grasses,
Geese gabbled sleepily at other geese.

Moon disappeared behind a cloudscape,
Stars no longer seen by eye,
Blackness like a cloak descended,
Ground just merged with far away sky.

Shapes mysterious and shadows loomed,
Atmosphere of eeriness gripped,
Path no longer visible,
Feeling my way lest my foot tripped.

Heart raced swiftly in tightening chest,
Ears picked up mysterious sounds,
Imagination carried away,
What threats are near waiting to pounce.

Dog approached me barking wildly,
Gate hinge creaked, and latch did too,
Front door opened there before me,
Glad to be home, I stepped through.

(Copyright The Dorset Rambler)

Thanks for stopping by.

Until next time,
Your friend The Dorset Rambler

If you would like to contact me,¬†my email address is terry.yarrow@gmail.com¬†‚Äď comments and feedback are always welcomed.

All photographs, poems and words in this blog are the copyright of The Dorset Rambler and must not be reproduced without permission.

Beside the Weir

20 Aug

This poem was inspired by an evening walk along the banks of the River Stour. The river flows gently and peacefully above and below the weir that sits beside the old mill, but for just a brief interlude it becomes a raging torrent. This is what I wrote as I sat beside the weir.

Beside the Weir

Beside the Weir

Calm and tranquil flows the stream,
Peace personified, as in a dream,
Gentle waters seem crystal clear,
Until it reaches the ancient weir.

Suddenly that peaceful flow,
Becomes a torrent, rushing below,
Thunderous sounds of crashing flood,
Whipped up white, in angry mood.

Beyond the weir it slows its pace,
Once more flowing with amazing grace,
Peace restored, it rolls lazily on,
Seeming no rush for it to be gone.

That interlude of power and rush,
Only short lived, one quick push,
Breaks up the peace of my waterside walk,
Interrupting my quiet thoughts.

And yet there is wonder in that short space,
As water rushes down as if in a race,
The effect on me made me want to be near,
And I returned again and sat by the weir.

(Copyright The Dorset Rambler)

Thanks for stopping by.

Until next time,
Your friend The Dorset Rambler

If you would like to contact me,¬†my email address is terry.yarrow@gmail.com¬†‚Äď comments and feedback are always welcomed.

All photographs, poems and words in this blog are the copyright of The Dorset Rambler and must not be reproduced without permission.

Shadowlands

4 Feb

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Nine windows look towards the sun,
But it can’t be seen from every one,
Shadows of reality show,
Where sits the block, so go
And look at your own life,
What shadows steal your peace, your sight?
Change your viewpoint, change your place,
Avoid the shadows on your face!
(The Dorset Rambler) 

Everything that we see is a shadow cast by that which we do not see!
(Martin Luther King Jr)

Sometimes life throws shadows on us so that we can no longer see the sun. Maybe a change of viewpoint is all that is needed. So go to a window that is not in shadow…..!

Thanks for stopping by.

Until next time,
Your friend The Dorset Rambler

I HAVE NOW SET UP A FACEBOOK PAGE FOR THE DORSET RAMBLER AND THERE IS A LINK ABOVE. THIS IS TO BRING TOGETHER MY THREE PASSIONS OF DORSET, WALKING/THE OUTDOORS, AND PHOTOGRAPHY. IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN THESE OR YOU ENJOY MY BLOG, PLEASE DO ‚ÄėLIKE‚Äô MY FACEBOOK PAGE.

If you would like to contact me, my details are on my website which is¬†http://www.yarrowphotography.com¬†‚Äď comments and feedback are welcomed.

All photographs, poems and words in this blog are the copyright of The Dorset Rambler and must not be reproduced without permission.

Only the Girl in the Poster Seems to Dance

11 Dec People at Work - The City Busker

Now I love walking in the countryside far away from….hustle and bustle, the daily drudge, telephone and traffic, noise and noisier people, places, pets and parping horns….to be just me with¬†the peace of the countryside enveloping me as¬†mist clings to a mountain. I like to be lost in lush and leafy lanes, heathery heathlands, fertile forests, hilltops and coasts. These are the places I am totally me.

Despite this, I can find pleasure wherever I am, even in a busy city….and we visited one recently on a cold and grey December day for the Christmas Market. Now, as a photographer it is good to push the envelope, to broaden the boundaries, so while we were in the city I decided that I would set myself a¬†project which I call ‘People at Work’. This pushes me out of my comfort zone because my intention was to approach complete strangers to ask if I could take their photograph whilst they worked – not something I am comfortable with.

So these pictures are the first few from this new project.  They are people I met and talked to along the way, and I have written some words to go with them.

Only the Girl in the Poster Seems to Dance

The clothes seller sells her colourful wares,
To chilly people who are full of their cares,
Her cheerful smile adds light to their day,
As they shiver along on their wearying way.

People at Work - The Knitwear Seller

The toy seller sits behind his stall,
Surrounded by toys, he made them all,
Which children will these things delight?
Whose tree be under on Christmas night?

People at Work - The Toy Maker

The artist sketches a beautiful girl,
All wrapped up against the winter chill,
It’s not complete, there’s more to do,
But already the likeness is coming through.

People at Work - The Street Artist

The crooner sings a smooth soothing song,
People rush by, they can’t wait too long,
But they walk away with music in ear,
To bring a bit of good Christmas cheer.

People at Work - The City Busker

The hot-dog seller, a pretty young girl,
Hair tied back to tame her curls,
Provides some food to help shoppers shop,
And a little warmth from her burning hob.

People at Work - The Hot-Dog Seller

The fiddler plays a bright merry tune,
I bet he wishes this was flaming June,
Is anyone listening I wonder perchance, as
Only the girl in the poster seems to dance!

 

People at Work - The Violinist

Everyone I have asked since starting this project has been very willing to pose for my camera so thank you to all my subjects. There will be more to come!

Thanks for stopping by.

Until next time,

Your friend
The Dorset Rambler.

I HAVE NOW SET UP A FACEBOOK PAGE FOR THE DORSET RAMBLER AND THERE IS A LINK ABOVE. THIS IS TO BRING TOGETHER MY THREE PASSIONS OF DORSET, WALKING/THE OUTDOORS, AND PHOTOGRAPHY. IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN THESE OR YOU ENJOY MY BLOG, PLEASE DO ‚ÄėLIKE‚Äô MY FACEBOOK PAGE.

If you would like to contact me, my details are on my website which is¬†http://www.yarrowphotography.com¬†‚Äď comments and feedback are welcomed.

All photographs, poems and words in this blog are the copyright of The Dorset Rambler and must not be reproduced without permission.

 

Who Cares?

7 Mar

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Faceless names upon the stone,
No one knows, they are gone,
Ashes to ashes, no-one there,
Does anyone care?

Loved ones once, when alive,
But all too soon, their time to die,
Leaving this earth, with mourners there,
People around to care!

Generations passed, all forgot,
No-one now tends their final plot,
Overgrown and in disrepair,
Does anyone care?

Who cares?

Who Cares!!!!

This was a fascinating place, an old and uncared for Dorset cemetery.  Mentioned in the Doomsday Book, the old church to which the graveyard belonged was demolished in 1742 to make way for a new building a mile or so down the road.  Now the cemetery stands alone, neglected and uncared for, but the graves are still there Рits just that no-one knows the people any more.  It struck me as sad and poignant and I composed the above poem to express something of that feeling.

When those people were buried, others would have stood around the grave mourning their loss. ¬†Generations later…….who cares? ¬†How many people will remember you or me, and for how long? ¬†Who will care?

Thanks for reading.

Until next time,

Your friend
The Dorset Rambler.

If you would like to contact me, my details are on my website which is¬†http://www.yarrowphotography.com¬†‚Äď comments and feedback are welcomed.

All photographs, poems and words in this blog are the copyright of The Dorset Rambler and must not be reproduced without permission.

Of dappled sunlight, amazing views, ridges and valleys, and some lost cows!

29 Aug

What a difference to last year! ¬†2012 was wet, wet, wet; 2013 has been sunshine and warmth, making for some wonderful walks and very pleasant evenings. ¬†Despite my ankle problems, I managed to get out on the trail again this week although I trod with care. ¬†The X-Ray is done and I now just have to wait for the report…….and in the meantime I will continue to tread carefully, and walk on :)!

This walk started on a ridge top although my route immediately took me down into the valley along a stony track which definitely needed care as the last thing I needed was a twisted ankle.  The problem with these rough tracks is that you have to watch where you are walking, and with views ahead like the one below, it is hard to watch the ground.

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Rough path, great view!

It wasn’t long though before I came out onto a country lane. ¬†Now I really like walking along country lanes because the walking is easy and you can fully take in all that is around you. ¬†However, that is provided the country lane is quiet…….which this one normally is…….except in the school holidays! ¬†I found myself stepping into the hedge with monotonous regularity to get out of the path of passing cars. ¬†With beautiful dappled sunlight and amazing views ahead, it was still lovely despite the traffic.

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A ‘quiet’ country lane

In fact, with signs like the one below, you wouldn’t want to step too far into the hedge :)!

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Traffic one side, unexploded shells on the otherūüėČ

The lane led me into one of those typically Dorset hamlets, with a manor house, a farm, a church and a cottage or two, nothing more.  Most of these settlements date back to manorial days before transport was easy and people needed to live near their work, and their lordly employers.  I was pleased to see the cottage below being re-thatched.  I have walked past it many times and have always felt sad at the poor state of repair into which it had fallen.

These cottages are so typically Dorset and they look so picture post card perfect but with those tiny windows, they must be quite dark inside. ¬†As someone who loves light and the outdoors, I am not so sure that living in one would suit me. ¬†And I’m not so sure I would want the huge capital cost of re-thatching either as it has a limited life span, not to mention the high cost of insurance!

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Refurbishment in progress

Continuing through the hamlet, my route took me along a wonderful quiet lane with dappled light filtering through the patchwork of leaves and branches above, highlighting the colours in the foliage.  With the ladder leaning against the tree it was like a Hardy scene and I almost expected someone in a smock to be picking apples.

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Nearly autumn!

And on to the church with its graveyard where in Thomas Gray’s words, ‘Each in his narrow cell forever laid, The rude forefathers of the hamlet sleep’. ¬†I wonder what this hamlet was like in their day! ¬†Who were they and what stories could they tell?

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The Rude forefathers of the hamlet sleep

And of course, yet more dappled light with the sunshine filtering through the overhanging branches of the ever present yew trees.  Just beautiful!

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Beneath the yew tree’s shade

Leaving the village behind, I continued across the fields and past one of my successes :)!  In amongst the trees there is a small wooden bridge which once was broken and impassable and which badly needed replacing.  There is a system in Dorset whereby you can report problems with footpaths and I do this regularly Рthe bridge has now been replaced :)!

I have spoken before about good farmers who reinstate paths after fields have been ploughed up or planted, as opposed to ‘bad’ ones who don’t. ¬†This little wooden bridge leads onto the field of a good farmer who always reinstates the path by driving his tractor diagonally across the field. ¬†I stopped part way and turned to look back down the ‘tram lines’ to see the church now far in the distance.

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Down the tram lines

One of the highlights of this walk is undoubtedly the section that traverses the ridge just inland of the coast path Рoften I would walk along the coast path itself but sadly due to the many serious cliff falls last year, that path is still closed.  As sad as that is, the inland route is equally beautiful with a fabulous panorama which covers 360 degrees.  Just gaze in wonder with me for a moment, feel the sea breeze on your face and smell the countryside.

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A fabulous panorama

One of the good things about this walk is that when you leave one view, the next is not far away.  Walking round to the next valley brought another vista to be enjoyed and as it was past lunch time, I sat on the hillside and ate looking out onto the scene below.  Where better to eat!

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Lunch time view

This valley is truly amazing, a huge bowl with a ridge of hills round three sides and the sea on the fourth, and with another of the Purbeck mansions sitting in the middle, with of course its associated farm.  This whole valley and surrounds changed hands a few years ago for £25M.  What a place to live!  In the picture below, I have tried to capture the whole amphitheatre although it never comes across fully in a small picture.

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The ‘amphitheatre’

And all around the top of the bowl runs the path that forms my way onwards, and what a lovely path. ¬†This is one of those paths that I call ‘bare foot paths’, beautifully grassy and flat and the sort of path that when I was young we used to take off our shoes and socks and walk bare foot along. ¬†So refreshing on a hot summers day, and so liberating! ¬†These days I keep my shoes on but it always takes me back to my youth :)!

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Bare foot path

Having circled the valley perimeter, my route took me on to another country lane – another normally quiet road that was not so quiet today! ¬†Clearly some work was going on somewhere as trucks came past me kicking up dust. ¬†Still, as someone once said, ‘If life throws you scraps, make a patchwork quilt’ – the trucks might be a nuisance but they provided some good photographic opportunities :)!

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Dust to dust

The lane eventually took me into the hilltop village with its lovely array of cottages and its well known church which is often referred to as the ‘Cathedral of the Purbecks’ because it is far too grand for a small Dorset village thanks to the generosity of the Lord of the Manor.

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A village cottage with the ‘Cathedral of the Purbecks’ behind

I said before that this is a walk with one view after another Рwell there was another just round the corner.  Walking down another of those old gravel tracks which seem to criss cross throughout Dorset, the view suddenly opened out and the famous old castle came into view far down in the valley.  Crossing the stile, I continued down the hillside and across the common towards what is probably one of the most popular towns in Purbeck.

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Down the valley

Although I love this town, when I am walking, I try as far as possible to avoid the busy places as I would rather be out in the wilds.  So I skirted round civilisation, just grabbing a closer shot of the castle standing proud on its hilltop.

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Standing proud

And a little farther on, there was a sad reminder of something that I had heard on the news earlier in the day. ¬†The picture below shows the castle framed between two ash trees and I called it ‘Ashes to Ashes’ partly because of the two trees, partly because of the nearly destroyed castle, but also because sadly the Ash Dieback disease has come to Dorset. ¬†Up till now, the county has been pretty much clear of it and these two ash trees have had a long life. ¬†I wonder how much longer they have though :(!

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Ashes to Ashes

The final part of my walk involved a climb up onto another ridge, the Purbeck Hills from which the area takes its name, and yet more glorious views.  And yet more bare foot walking paths too :)!  Flat, wide and grassy, just what was needed with my bad ankle.

It was along this section that I had one of those odd experiences. ¬†Half way along, the path drops down to a road that crosses the ridge and a lady approached me and asked, “Were there any cows up there?”. ¬†I assured her that there hadn’t been and asked somewhat tongue in cheek, “Why, have you lost some?”. ¬†In fact she hadn’t! ¬†She was actually working for the county council environmental health department and apparently there had been a complaint about a cow with an eye infection – she was looking for that cow. ¬†When she described where it was, I was able to point her in the right direction which was another nearby ridge.

It was interesting chatting to her – she had been doing this job for 20 years and it involved investigating complaints and visiting farms throughout Dorset. ¬†Since it was a lovely warm summer’s day, I thought what a great job that must be…..until she pointed out that she does the same thing in freezing winter weather when she can be knee deep in mud and other farmyard materials! ¬†It didn’t seem quite so idyllic then ;)!

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Along the ridge top

I was nearing the end of the walk now and the evening sun was setting, creating a beautiful warm glow across the hilltop and picking out the long grass which seemed to be aflame.  The evening was very still and balmy as I passed the castellated arch which stands on the ridge above yet another old Purbeck mansion.  The house itself sits in the valley below and the arch is in fact nothing more that a folly that can be seen from the house but it always adds a little bit of mystery in the fading light.  I sat a while and just drank in the scene, and some water too before heading back to the car.

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Evening light across the hilltop

What a wonderful walk!  So many views, such great paths, fabulous weather, and lots of memories to carry with me always.  I hope you enjoyed walking with me!

Until next time,
Your friend
The Dorset Rambler.

If you would like to contact me, my details are on my website which is¬†http://www.yarrowphotography.com¬†‚Äď comments and feedback are welcomed.

All photographs, poems and words in this blog are the copyright of The Dorset Rambler and must not be reproduced without permission.