15 Aug, 2021

Time for a lull …

Now, six days since the last blog entry – possibly a record.  Why wasn’t I tapping the keyboard?

It’s been a tough few days, health-wise.  The MND is advancing: balance, walking, breathing, left side muscles, hand strength, saliva control, head support, all are worse.  On top of that though it’s been extreme exhaustion, more than I could ever have imagined.  It’s only about twenty yards from bedroom to living room but that’s enough to get me sinking heavily onto the sofa to recover.

I’ve been having almost no sleep.  It was potentially a serious health scare, unrelated to MND, keeping me awake for much of the night and which might have needed an operation, but tests indicate it’s just an infection which should be cleared up in a few days with the antibiotic my excellent GP supplied two days ago.  Fingers crossed.

I’m going to take a two week break, resting in the flat and hopefully getting some energy back.  It’s mid-August so there will be radio silence in the blog until the start of September unless something cataclysmic happens, such as DP growing whiskers again.  No, fear not …

If you’re interested, I’ll be indulging in a favourite pastime: staring at the wall, staring through the window, staring at the roof garden, and letting the mind wander gently over anything it likes, including Life.  We live a poor life if we can’t do that occasionally.  Which reminds me  – and the words were contrived to do so – of this simple, true poem that many will know:

Leisure (1911)


What is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare?-


No time to stand beneath the boughs
And stare as long as sheep or cows:


No time to see, when woods we pass,
Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass:


No time to see, in broad daylight,
Streams full of stars, like skies at night:


No time to turn at Beauty’s glance,
And watch her feet, how they can dance:


No time to wait till her mouth can
Enrich that smile her eyes began?


A poor life this if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.


W.H. Davies

Nice, eh?  I’ll be sitting and staring, and enjoying.  Sitting or standing, join me?

See you next month.


  1. So sorry you’ve had such a rough time; special prayers will be going up for you. I’m reminded of a favorite poster I had in college: an empty three-legged stool with the caption, “Sometimes I sets and thinks, and sometimes I jus’ sets”. My library, where I spend a lot of time at the computer, has two big windows on the back yard, so I can see the grass, trees, flowers, birds, squirrels, and a fat old ground hog who lives in the hedge and eats fallen apples from my tree. Much love.

  2. You are amazing not to have felt the need to rest, sit and stare sooner Dave, and I too am really sorry it’s been such a tough couple of weeks. Everything crossed that the antibiotics kick in really quickly and clear up the infection. Let the mind wander, and look forward to hearing from you next month. Love from all of us xxxx

  3. I love that poem……I often think of it when dashing around like a mad thing, and I have to make myself stop and just look out the cottage windows. Or when we are out walking, it’s lovely just to stop and look at the small things of nature.
    There are also many “chill out” videos on the net with glorious scenes of nature, with relaxing music, so maybe those could help too!
    Lots of love and prayers to-day for you.

  4. Hello David, and love, and prayers. As your mind wanders back over the memories of the years, I would be surprised if it didn’t meet up with ours, doing the same thing, and offer a quiet smile, and a greeting, and a hug.

  5. Hi David, I too echo earlier thoughts and send you prayers for a rest and like others I hope your thought can wander alongside mine as I wander with you and we stop and stare at something lovely in the far away or close by. Sending love from all of us. Xxxx

  6. I’ve always loved that poem and have often remarked that the current trend regarding ‘mindfulness’ is not a new phenomenon since this poem was written over a century ago! So sorry you are having a particularly rough time at the moment and hope this break will allow your mind to take you to a peaceful place where you can immerse yourself in the small but beautiful everyday things around you. I shall make a concerted effort to do the same. Love always Ez x

  7. I have always think of that poem when I walking in the countryside and now I will think of you
    My love and best wishes always Barbara


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