Henry VIII and Elizabeth I in Enfield

Elsyng Palace was a family home for Henry VIII and his children, probably as large as Hampton Court.  Each summer the Enfield Archaeological Society excavate a bit more and then cover it up to prevent weather damage.  The patience and skill of those who trowel and brush are just amazing.

 

Forty Hall Elsynge roots edit

 

It is lovely to see how roots spread.  Trees connect to each other by their roots using their own internet , Mycorrhiza.  You can read about it in a superbe book “The Hidden Life of Trees” by Peter Wohlleben.

 

Forty Hall Elsynge roots 2 edit

One of the local oral histories is that Sir Walter Raleigh laid down his cloak for Queen, Elizabeth I to prevent her getting her feet wet at Maiden’s Bridge. Elizabeth lived in Elsyng Manor from time to time and Raleigh lived in nearby Chase Side so I feel it is a credible story.

Forty Hall Maiden's Bridge 2 edit

 

 

 

This image is of what is probably a Victorian bridge but I like it and,  it is called Maiden’s Bridge.

 

 

Some more images; it is a delightful spot.

 

and one of a tree:

Forty Hall tree edit

All the above are in the Forty Hall Estate which, for a while, was owned by the Parker-Bowles family.  Thinking about it all a poem came to me.

Maiden’s Bridge
Here, five hundred years ago,
Raleigh laid down a cloak for his queen.
It was rich-velvet, patterned with fine jewels.

Half a millennium later,
A son of the family who came to own around here,
Laid down his willing wife for a prince.

Raleigh was beheaded,
The man divorced.

© Anthony Fisher July 2018

About five miles from Forty Hall, just over the boundary in Essex,  is Waltham Abbey.  It has a connection with Elsyng through Henry VIII.  It was the last Abbey to be taken over by Henry during the Reformation which he had planned whilst staying at Elsyng.  The abbot was  a very learned man and Henry enjoyed conversation with him.  I have a tenuous connection too.  The last Saxon king, Harald, was buried there some time after he was killed by William the Conqueror at the Battle of Hastings in 1066. One of the Knights that fought with William was Robert-with-a-beard. and of the 850,000 ancestors I have of that time, he is the only one I know!  The U of my initials is for Umfreville which is derived from the village in Normandy he came from.

Enough of that! Waltahm abbey is delightful and we had in interesting visit.  There are faces carved into the exterior stone and this is one most venal:

The ducks are more beautiful on the river near the mill race.  They arranged their pose and waited for me to take the photograph quacking their impatience.

Waltham Abbey Ducks edit

Inside the ceiling is beautiful with Victorian paintings of the zodiac.  The magnificent organ is being restored so there is bright shiny scaffolding as you enter.

 

Waltham Abbey scaffoldng edit

 

 

 

 

 

Waltham Abbey scaffoldng 2 edit

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My sign is Capricorn the sea or mergoat. I feel that it is older than Greek mythology and it has its origins in Oannes.  Perhaps, but here is the Capricorn panel.

Waltham Abbey Seagoatc edit

There is a lovely freeze behind the alter and a mediaeval wall painting in the Lady Chapel (I did not photograph the painting).

Waltham Abbey instruction edit

All in all, two good places to visit.

 

Holocaust Memorial Day, Dugdale Theatre, Enfield

This year, Enfield poets were asked to read poems  at the Holocaust Memorial Day  taking place in Enfield and I wrote the Haiku above for this occasion and it was translated into Hebrew by Poet Nurit Kahana.  In the feature image above you can see us in the front row. From the right; Christine Vial, me and Valerie Darville who was sitting next to Gerald Granston who spoke about his experience escaping from Germany on the SS St Louis.

HMD Programme 2018-3

 

It was an extraordinarily moving event that were very proud to have taken part in. The theatre was full and there was a mix of ages and backgrounds of both  those taking an active part and those in the audience.  As well as the moving account by Gerald Granston of his experiences on the SS St Louis and how he eventually came to England, there was a film of Appolinaire Kageruka  speaking of his harrowing experiences during the Genocide in Rwanda demonstrating that genocide is still happening all these years later.

 

I was made to think of the awfulness and horror of the Holocaust with friends, neighbours, work colleagues denouncing Jews to the Nazis; how could this happen?  I was born during the war and remember post war newsreels of the death camps but I needed to be reminded of this now. How can we keep the memories alive so that they are still real, visceral, long after any survivors of those dreadful times are no longer with us?  The Memorial Days are designed, in part, to achieve this and I hope they succeed.

Hlcaust Memorial Day_Enf_011

 

There was music from he Wolfson Hillel Primary school choir who sang, in Hebrew, songs full of passion and feeling.

 

 

 

Hlcaust Memorial Day_Enf_102

 

 

Cllr. Doug Taylor who initiated Enfield’s first Holocaust Memorial Day talking to Gerald Granston and Rabbi Emanuel Levy.

 

 

 

HMD 25th Jan 2018

 

 

 

Enfield Poet Christine Vial

 

Hlcaust Memorial Day_Enf_029

 

 

 

 

 

Enfield Poet Anthony Fisher

 

 

 

 

The poems can be seen here.

Images courtesy of the London Borough of Enfield

 

Poetic Voices – sound archive for all poets.

A poem comes alive when it is read out loud, changes and with an audience it becomes three dimensional; poem, reader, audience.  Poetic Voices  is a sound archive for all poets so that as many people as is possible can hear them read their poem.  I hope that it continues long beyond me so that it everyone can be heard for all time.  At least that is my dream.

Palmistry

 

 

 

Looking into the future!

 

 

 

 

 

It began when I was puzzling over how visitors to the Dugdale Arts Centre  could listen to poems.  I struggled with the idea of a tablet with jukebox programme, exhibition stand but none seemed safe and stable and all were rather costly.  I then thought “jukebox” and found a company who sold reconditioned pub jukeboxes that had a touch screen and Windows operating system on the computer and it weighed 90 kgs.  so it would not walk!  Once I had fitted two sets of earphones and mastered the mysteries of meta data the Jukebox Poetry was born!

Juke box Anthony and Clive Jones

 

 

The jukebox with Clive Jones and me looking rather too proprietorial!

 

 

 

The poems are loaded into an album of about 10 to 12 tracks which are then uploaded to the jukebox.  So there are about 12 albums  and I need to upload some more.

Back to Poetic Voices so far we have some 63 poets and about 150 poems.  More are need so please contact me via the contacts page if you would like to have you reading your poems added to the site.  It has hits from all over the world which is just lovely.

Just for fun have a listen to Polyglottal Londinium.  It is an Audio Visual of all 28 translations of my poem Londinium.  The idea came to me as I was travelling to Liverpool Street Station and the carriage seemed to be full of the world speaking at the same time.  I did not understand a word but it was thrilling.