Coal Dust and Soap Powder

That smell reminds me of winter. In summer the washing was hung on the line, so it smelled of fresh air and sunshine but in winter it was hung over the clothes horse and stood by the fire to air. A coal scuttle stood close to the fire. Coal dust and soap powder, a strange combination, one I am unlikely to smell again but if I did, I would be straight back in that high ceilinged room with the big bay window and red and gold patterned carpet. The carpet was cut up later and put into two smaller rooms.

The Gnome at Your Door

The gnome at your door is not what you think!

He was a proud elven warrior, well-versed in poetry and lore, an excellent harpist descended from Lugh of the Silver Hand, his mother a promiscuous nymph.

When he witnessed the Industrial Revolution he shrunk in stature, fleeing to the fields to hide.

Years later he went to the Somme. It was then his heart turned to stone and broke clean in half. He was transfixed, unable to move, deformed.

How he arrived in our shops I don’t know. I pray that he doesn’t either.

Bow with respect as you pass.

His Spirit

If I compared him to a horse, he was sweet natured and easily lead. Faced with aggression he would posture, curl his lip and say grrrrrr. He was a teddy bear. But his wit was as quick as a monkey. His intelligence flashed. His memory was elephantine.

He passed through the doors of perception, almost unscathed, but his sensitivity was heightened until he could barely survive. Cut loose in a field with the gates open wide he ran and was lost from sight. There were too many tigers out there. They sunk their claws in his back.