Friday Poetry

This weeks poem is in honour of St George as it was St George’s day this week.

I chose an old favourite poem from my childhood, which appeaeled to me no end because I loved the idea of having a pet dragon when I was a child and to be honest I still do.

 

St George and the Dragon

 

St George looked at the dragon

And much to his surprise,

He noticed that the dragon

Had large appealing eyes.

‘Pardon me,’ said brave St George,

‘I hear you’re cruel and sly.’

‘Oh no, not me,’ the dragon said,

‘I wouldn’t hurt a fly.’

‘I’ve come to slay you,’ said St George, 

‘And save the maiden fair

That you have captured, and no doubt

Imprisoned in your lair.’

‘I used to be both cruel and sly,

Of that there is no doubt,’

Replied the dragon, ‘but not now,

My fire has all burnt out.

The maiden you have come to save

Has made a pet of me.

She takes me walkies on a lead

And feeds me cups of tea.

So if you want to do brave deeds

The like of which I’ve read,

Please take the maiden home with you,

And so save me instead.’

 

Finola Akister

 

Lady Book Dragon

 

 

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Waterstones Challenge: Wells

This week we went on a little holiday to Wells, so of course I had to check out the Waterstones store. We also visited the Cathedral and Bishops Palace.

This store is 9/283 on my list, nearly into double figures!

I really liked this store, it reminded me of Narnia, it just kept on going, it was a very long store. It was brilliantly laid out and the staff were fantastic. It was an excellent store to visit on my holiday.

I was also very restrained and just bought two books!

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I Am Legend by Richard Matheson

I read this book a long time ago and would love to read it again as I remember I really enjoyed it the first time, but because I originally borrowed it off my cousin, I did not own a copy so I thought it was high time I had my own and I would also like my husband to read it as I think he would enjoy it.

The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman

This is to continue my work reading all of Neil Gaiman’s books! I also really liked the cover.

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So far I am thoroughly enjoying my Waterstones adventures as each store has its own character and style. I am also getting quite a following on Twitter from different Waterstones stores. One store has even promised me cookies for when I visit! Thank you for all the love so far.

Here are also some snaps from Wells.

 

Lady Book Dragon.

Mid Week Quote

As yesterday was Shakespeare’s birthday, I have gone for a quote from Shakepeare’s play Macbeth. 

Macbeth is probably the play I have seen the most on stage and on TV and it always amazes me how each production is portrayed differently.

 

“Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player that struts and frets his hour upon the stage, and then is heard no more.”

 

William Shakespeare (c. 1606)

 

Lady Book Dragon.

Happy Birthday William Shakespeare

Happy Birthday Shakespeare!

It is not known on which day Shakespeare was actually born but the 23rd April has become the day we celebrate his birthday, it is also the same day he died. I personally hope he was born on a different day because I find it very sad that he died on his birthday.

William Shakespeare as I bet you all know was a famous English playwright, poet and actor in the 1500’s and early 1600’s. He is also known as the Bard of Avon.

It is believed his work extends to 39 plays, 154 sonnets and two long narrative poems there are also some verses that are believed to be his work but it is not definite.

I have visited Shakespeare’s family home a few times over the years and always find it fascinating, the man is quite a mystery, as so little is known about his life with his family. I always feel sorry for his poor wife though as he spent so much time away in London and she was left at home with the children, I can’t help but wonder what went through her mind. She must have been a very trusting woman.

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I have studied many of Shakespeare’s plays over the years and seen them on the stage. So far I have only found one I can not stand and that is The Tempest, no matter how many times I have read it and seen it I still dislike it and I doubt it will ever change. Otherwise I love all the rest and my favourites have got to be The Taming of the Shrew and A Midsummer Night’s Dream. I played Puck in a school A Level production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

Our Drama teacher also made us regularly memorise Shakespeare sonnets and recite them on stage.

Anyway, that is my little relationship with the work of Shakespeare.

Happy Birthday and thank you for all your great work.

 

Lady Book Dragon.

Happy Easter

Happy Easter Everyone!

To celebrate Easter Day I have chosen another Easter poem, this one by Oscar Wilde.

I hope everyone has a wonderful day today.

 

Easter Day

The silver trumpets rang across the Dome:
The people knelt upon the ground with awe:
And borne upon the necks of men I saw,
Like some great God, the Holy Lord of Rome.

Priest-like, he wore a robe more white than foam,
And, king-like, swathed himself in royal red,
Three crowns of gold rose high upon his head:
In splendour and in light the Pope passed home.

My heart stole back across wide wastes of years
To One who wandered by a lonely sea,
And sought in vain for any place of rest:
‘Foxes have holes, and every bird its nest,
I, only I, must wander wearily,
And bruise my feet, and drink wine salt with tears.’

Oscar Wilde

 

Lady Book Dragon.

Down the TBR Hole #6

Happy Easter weekend everyone! I hope you are all having a nice relaxing and book filled long weekend.

Down the TBR Hole was the brain child of Lost In A Story. The idea is to reduce the length of your Goodreads TBR.

How it works:

  • Go to your Goodreads want to read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added
  • Take the first 5 or 10 books.
  • Read the synopses of the books.
  • Decide: keep it or should it go

The list is now at 484, lets see if we can shrink it a little bit more.

1. Wizard’s First Rule by Terry Goodkind

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In the aftermath of the brutal murder of his father, a mysterious woman, Kahlan Amnell, appears in Richard Cypher’s forest sanctuary seeking help . . . and more.

His world, his very beliefs, are shattered when ancient debts come due with thundering violence. In a dark age it takes courage to live, and more than mere courage to challenge those who hold dominion, Richard and Kahlan must take up that challenge or become the next victims. Beyond awaits a bewitching land where even the best of their hearts could betray them. Yet, Richard fears nothing so much as what secrets his sword might reveal about his own soul. Falling in love would destroy them—for reasons Richard can’t imagine and Kahlan dare not say.

In their darkest hour, hunted relentlessly, tormented by treachery and loss, Kahlan calls upon Richard to reach beyond his sword—to invoke within himself something more noble. Neither knows that the rules of battle have just changed . . . or that their time has run out.

This is the beginning. One book. One Rule. Witness the birth of a legend.

This book has been on my list since 2014 and to be honest I really do not think I will read it. Terry Goodkind books tend to put me off to be honest because they seem to always be on the long side.

GO

2. Sylvia’s Lovers by Elizabeth Gaskell

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A very powerfully moving novel of a young woman caught between the attractions of two very different men, Sylvia’s Lovers is set in the 1790s in an English seaside town. England is at war with France, and press-gangs wreak havoc by seizing young men for service. One of their victims is a whaling harpooner named Charley Kinraid, whose charm and vivacity have captured the heart of Sylvia Robson. But Sylvia’s devoted cousin, Philip Hepburn, hopes to marry her himself and, in order to win her, deliberately withholds crucial information—with devastating consequences.
The introduction discusses the novel’s historical and geographical authenticity, as well as its innovative treatment of gender and human relationships

I think over time I have put all of Gaskell’s books on my TBR. I do plan on reading them all so I will keep this one on the list, I also really like the blurb.

KEEP

3. The Mill on the Floss by George Eliot

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Brought up at Dorlcote Mill, Maggie Tulliver worships her brother Tom and is desperate to win the approval of her parents, but her passionate, wayward nature and her fierce intelligence bring her into constant conflict with her family. As she reaches adulthood, the clash between their expectations and her desires is painfully played out as she finds herself torn between her relationships with three very different men: her proud and stubborn brother, a close friend who is also the son of her family’s worst enemy, and a charismatic but dangerous suitor. With its poignant portrayal of sibling relationships, The Mill on the Floss is considered George Eliot’s most autobiographical novel; it is also one of her most powerful and moving.

This has been sat on my bookshelf for ages! I really should read it, for now it will stay on the list.

KEEP

4. The Portrait of a Lady by Henry James

264When Isabel Archer, a beautiful, spirited American, is brought to Europe by her wealthy Aunt Touchett, it is expected that she will soon marry. But Isabel, resolved to determine her own fate, does not hesitate to turn down two eligible suitors. She then finds herself irresistibly drawn to Gilbert Osmond, who, beneath his veneer of charm and cultivation, is cruelty itself. A story of intense poignancy, Isabel’s tale of love and betrayal still resonates with modern audiences.

 

 

 

 

I’m not a fan of Henry James to be honest and have struggled in the past to get into his books. Therefore this book will be coming off the list.

GO

5. The Mayor of Casterbridge by Thomas Hardy

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In a fit of drunken anger, Michael Henchard sells his wife and baby daughter for five guineas at a country fair. Over the course of the following years, he manages to establish himself as a respected and prosperous pillar of the community of Casterbridge, but behind his success there always lurk the shameful secret of his past and a personality prone to self-destructive pride and temper. Subtitled ‘A Story of a Man of Character’, Hardy’s powerful and sympathetic study of the heroic but deeply flawed Henchard is also an intensely dramatic work, tragically played out against the vivid backdrop of a close-knit Dorsetshire town.

 

 

 

I have read a lot of Hardy’s books and I think he is brilliant so this definitely stays on the list.

KEEP

Well a few more have left the list and it is now down to 482. Slowly but surely the list is getting smaller.

Lady Book Dragon.

Friday Poetry

Well it is Good Friday, so I wanted a suitable poem to reflect this. I always think Christina Rossetti has excellent poems for the church festivals and yet again I have found a poem by her which is in my opinion perfect.

I hope you all have an excellent Easter weekend, but please remember it is not just about fluffy bunnies, cute chicks and chocolate eggs.

 

Good Friday

Am I a stone, and not a sheep,
That I can stand, O Christ, beneath Thy cross,
To number drop by drop Thy blood’s slow loss,
And yet not weep?

Not so those women loved
Who with exceeding grief lamented Thee;
Not so fallen Peter weeping bitterly;
Not so the thief was moved;

Not so the Sun and Moon
Which hid their faces in a starless sky,
A horror of great darkness at broad noon –
I, only I.

Yet give not o’er,
But seek Thy sheep, true Shepherd of the flock;
Greater than Moses, turn and look once more
And smite a rock.

Christina Rossetti

 

Lady Book Dragon.