From Figsbury Ring an ancient hill top fort,
Where safe within all lives were shaped with stone,
Through dangerous dales of deep monastic thought,
To power won by muscle and broken bone.
Women would spin the threads of tales unknown.
In England’s green and pleasant tree torn land
Wool made money not crops by human hand,
Oak built ships wooed the world, waged war with Spain
Till our landscape became a titled brand,
A green sodden land, no roots to remain.
This poem has come about as it is part of my poetic challenge this year to try the different forms Dverse Poets are focusing on each month. Having been busy with my older daughter’s wedding and delightful grandma duties and no internet connection I have not been fully present blogging!
I have been in the UK for longer than usual and wondering about our identity and relationship with the land. And just wondering about the bizarre politics and climate change. We have had an incredible heatwave, some days hotter than Seville and tremendous rainfall. So much that a dam that has stood the test of time has overflowed, causing damage and the town below evacuated. This is close to our northern home. We visited the town not long ago for Sunday lunch. We live near the river, the Goyt that flows from this dam but are way uphill and downstream but many places could be affected if the dam breaches. And more rain is expected.
The photos are from my travels and the places and links in the poem to our often forgotten working person’s history which is very much in focus in northern post industrial mill towns. It seems most of the photos were taken on sunny days! Oh and the UK has one of the worst percentages of tree coverage in Europe.
An English country house for the ‘entitled’ !
The form for this challenge is the dizain and can be found on the Dverse website. Dverse.com
The dizain is a 10-line form which – like so many good ones – originated in France. It was popular there in the 15th and 16 Centuries, and has also been used by such famous English poets as John Keats and Philip Sidney.
The basic rules for the dizain are that it has one stanza consisting of 10 lines, with 10 syllables per line, and the rhyme scheme is ababbccdcd.