Welcome to my blog, where I take pleasure in words and pictures, be they my own or those of others. I'm a creative individual, and the crafty side I explore on my 'other blog', Picking Up The Threads, which I hope you'll visit too. I'm sure you understand that I have sole copyright of my original work and any of my contributions, so please ask if you want to use them. A polite request is rarely refused. So, as they used to say on the BBC's 'Listen With Mother' radio programme, many years ago: "Are you sitting comfortably? Then we'll begin."

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Having a Spiritual Moment

Among the many thousands of things that I have never been able to understand, one in particular stands out. That is the question of who was the first person who stood by a pile of sand and said, “You know, I bet if we took some of this and mixed it with a little potash and heated it, we could make a material that would be solid and yet transparent. We could call it glass.” Call me obtuse, but you could stand me on a beach till the end of time, and never would it occur to me to try to make it into windows. (Bill Bryson)



For this week’s Thematic Photographic Challenge Carmi  at Written.Inc. wants to see what we can find that is made of glass. The problem was not what to put in, but what to leave out. I decided my photographs of the beautiful stained glass windows in St Mary’s Church, Brownsea Island, off the Dorset coast, had to be the main contenders. There are many wonderful examples of stained glass, in churches and houses around the world, some far more intricate than this, but the sheer simplicity of the above makes it stand out. I especially like the Dove of Peace on the cobalt blue background. The picture was taken on a day trip to the island with some children and staff of the school where I was headteacher for a while. Inside the church the children, led by my musical colleague, sang a sweet, impromptu, unaccompanied hymn in childish harmony. Many of these were pupils from very deprived backgrounds; travellers and refuge children, with mothers escaping violent partners. Their behaviour was often challenging, but they loved to sing, and always put every effort into it. For those few moments they were little angels and remembering it now, still gives me great pleasure.


So, with angels in mind, here is a very simple, glass cherub, candle-holder, rather eerily lit from the light in the glass display cabinet. He has a casual, somewhat nonchalant air I think. I don’t have many ornaments and ‘knick-knacks’ but this I treasure; when his night-light burns he is a focus of calm and peace. I don’t have to peer into my crystal ball to know that you will find other lovely examples of glass in its many forms, over at Written Inc.

11 comments:

  1. Nell, we must be telephatic. I had a series of stained glass windows for my post but decided against them. Wasn't Brownsea featured on TV recently for Spring Watch (?)? Magnificent windows in the church.

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  2. I love stained glass windows - these are beautiful. Scarlett x

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  3. Absolutely heaven sent! I ltoo agree with Bill in his quote about the creation of glass! Excellent TP!

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  4. An excellent juxtaposition of the formal, imposing windows, and the informal, rather cosy-looking cherub

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  5. The stained glass is beautiful, especially that glorious cobalt blue.

    And I love the cherub, with his "been there, done that" look about him!

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  6. I absolutely love stained glass windows. We used to have a beautiful one in a house I lived in with my parents. I'd love a stained glass window in this house and can't understand why there isn't one!

    CJ xx

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  7. I don't like stained glass windows, but appreciate the skill and understand others' love of them. I'm trying to think of a way to explain why I'm not a fan, but maybe I do like them really, just don't like the memories if church and see too many vile patriotic homages to dragons on glass around here!

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  8. I love stained glass windows - these are lovely!

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  9. Stained glass was my first thought when I saw this weeks theme, but I don't have many photos of it and what I do have is not very good, so I went a different way. I'm so glad you chose to share yours.

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  10. I've always loved stained glass art work, and they way you caught it in that first picture is gorgeous.

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  11. These are absolutely gorgeous! You've awakened an amazingly powerful memory:

    My friend's dad was an incredible artist. He painted and he did stained glass. Often, I'd go over for a playdate and while I was there, we'd get to watch him work in his studio. His stained glass decorated the entire house, and not a wall wasn't covered by his paintings.

    Magic from one man's imagination. Nothing short of amazing that such gifts can result in such beauty. I'm so glad you shared this as part of this theme.

    The next one, Vibrant, should be a fun one, too!

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