Let’s start with Jaywick. I think I can say that north-east Essex (Tendring Hundred) is my England, and that the little corner of it that for me will always be home is Jaywick.
I don’t live in Jaywick now – I don’t even live in Britain now – but I think and I remember and I dream of returning – yes, if ever I do it will be to Jaywick! Some of the posts will be about Jaywick as I remember it, the birds and the plants of the grassland and marshes and beach, and others about the more remote past (Saxon and Medieval) not just of Jaywick and Clacton and St Osyth, but of Tendring Hundred as a whole and of Colchester and the Colne Valley.
For those of you who do not know, this is Tendring Hundred in its setting in Essex and separated from Suffolk by the River Stour:
A “hundred” is a sub-division of a county, consisting originally of 100 hides of land – a “hide” being the amount of land needed to support a family and its dependants (perhaps a hundred acres?). The name Tendring probably comes from Tunderingas, the Saxon people from Tunderin in Saxony.
And where is Jaywick? Right down there at the bottom – facing due south and getting all the sunshine!
But I am first and foremost a poet (though I earn my daily bread as a teacher), and there will be lots of poems here, mostly my own, some by other poets (all poems are by me – James Munro – unless they are specifically attributed to someone else) and some original translations of French, Spanish and Greek poems; there will be articles on my favourite poets; and there will be posts on various matters which, like poetry, are intuitive and esoteric – think mysticism and the occult, our religious impulses before they became – or become – institutionalised. I am at present working on a collection of poems based on the Tarot, so I do mean the mystical and the occult, yes.
Let me sum this up with a few lines from two of my favourite poets and mystics. First, William Blake:
To see a World in a Grain of Sand.
And Heaven in a Wild Flower,
Hold Infinity in the palm of you hand,
And Eternity in an hour.
And Emily Bronte – the writer who of all writers I would most like to meet and talk to, get to know, even perhaps become her friend:
No coward soul is mine,
No trembler in the world’s storm-troubled sphere:
I see Heaven’s glories shine,
And faith shines equal, arming me from fear … more
I also like to philosophise from time to time, especially in the realm of Philosophy of Religion. What, for instance, does the word Faith as used by Emily Brontë signify and imply in this context?
À propos, here’s something to think about:
And I read a lot, so there will be occasional reviews of books I have enjoyed and wish to recommend.
Oh, and I like jokes! – and will definitely be sharing some here on this site:-