The Pub's Boot Room (final revision )

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The Pub's Boot Room (final revision )

Post by JJWilliamson » Sat Jul 13, 2019 3:22 pm

It speaks of crags and Herdwick trails,
of waterproofs and Gore-tex macs,
where laces worm through dusty veils
beside the hanging haversacks.

Ferny fronds and wisps of heather
cling to pestilential socks,
boiler pipes warm rows of leather
drying on a hardboard box.

My mind returns to foxglove paths,
to ancient folds of Lakeland slate,
and then the shores of Watendlath
and every cheeky kissing gate.

I think of Stickle Tarn in flood,
when Langdale musters heavy rain,
the rolling becks and claggy mud
that splash each boot and country lane.

So every boot room tells a tale
of those who wander round the fells,
but nothing beats a pint of ale
and laughter in the Ring O’ Bells.


Revision

It speaks of crags and Herdwick trails,
of waterproofs and Gore-tex macs,
where laces worm through dusty veils
beside the hanging haversacks.

Ferny fronds and wisps of heather
cling to pestilential socks,
boiler pipes warm rows of leather
drying on a hardboard box.

My mind returns to foxglove paths,
to ancient folds of Lakeland slate,
and then the shores of Watendlath
and every cheeky kissing gate.

I think of Stickle Tarn in flood,
when Langdale musters heavy rain,
the rolling becks and liquid mud
that splash each boot and country lane.

So every boot room tells a tale
of those who wander round the fells,
but nothing beats a pint of ale
and laughter in the Ring O’ Bells.


Original

It speaks of crags and Herdwick trails,
of waterproofs and Gore-tex macs,
where laces worm through dusty veils
beside the hanging haversacks.

ferny fronds and wisps of heather
cling to pestilential socks,
boiler pipes warm rows of leather
drying on a cardboard box.

My thoughts return to foxglove paths,
to ancient folds of Lakeland slate,
and then the shores of Watendlath
and every cheeky kissing gate.

I think of Stickle Tarn in flood,
when Langdale musters heavy rain,
the rolling becks and heavy mud
that splash each boot and country lane.

So every boot room tells a tale
of those who wander round the fells,
but nothing beats a pint of ale
and laughter in the Ring O’ Bells.
Long time a child and still a child

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Re: The Pub's Boot Room

Post by NotQuiteSure » Sat Jul 13, 2019 4:14 pm

,
Hi JJ,
very enjoyable, though I'd have preferred it began with a physical description
of the room as I don't think the opening is that strong.

Is smaller/larger than one might expect
with ...

(then)
maybe,

Chock full of crags and Herdwick trails,
left on boots and gortex macs
where laces wind through dusty vales
between/betwixt the hanging haversacks.

('hanging haversacks' is very satisfying.
Herdwick capitalised? And gortex?)

In S2, how is the 'cardboard box' not soggy? :)

S3,
Isn't it the boot room telling N it's tale (as in S5)?

It sends my mind/thoughts down foxglove paths
by ancient folds of Lakeland slate,
along the shores of Watendlath
through every cheeky kissing gate.


S4,
'I think' after 'My thoughts' (S3)?

Beside the Stickle Tarn in flood,
when Langdale summons heavy rain,
the rolling becks and heavy mud

(probably not appropriate but ...
that splash each sod and country lane.

S5,
should it be 'its tale'?
'laughter' seems a bit weak, maybe something more closely related to 'tales'?
and boasting/bragging in the Ring O'Bells ?


Regards, Not


.

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Re: The Pub's Boot Room

Post by JJWilliamson » Sat Jul 13, 2019 4:50 pm

Hi, Not

That was quick! :)

Thanks, as always, for the thoughtful critique. Much appreciated.
NotQuiteSure wrote:
Sat Jul 13, 2019 4:14 pm
,
Hi JJ,
very enjoyable, though I'd have preferred it began with a physical description
of the room as I don't think the opening is that strong. ...I'll give it a tweak during revision. Yes, I do see what you mean and it's one of several I have at my disposal. Just imagine what the others are like. :)

Is smaller/larger than one might expect
with ...

(then)
maybe,

Chock full of crags and Herdwick trails,
left on boots and gortex macs
where laces wind through dusty vales
between/betwixt the hanging haversacks.

('hanging haversacks' is very satisfying.
Herdwick capitalised? And gortex?) ...I've changed both. Herdwicks should have been capitalised but I fancied goretex had fallen into common usage, like hoover, kleenex and velcro. I could be wrong, of course.

In S2, how is the 'cardboard box' not soggy? :) ...It's very good quality cardboard. :D I'll change it to hardboard.

S3,
Isn't it the boot room telling N it's tale (as in S5)? ...The speaker looks inside the boot room and sees the rancid mess etc and yet it reminds him of the greater experience of the fells. It evokes some memories, just before he joins the crowd in the walkers bar. Everything gets its turn. :)

It sends my mind/thoughts down foxglove paths
by ancient folds of Lakeland slate,
along the shores of Watendlath
through every cheeky kissing gate.


S4,
'I think' after 'My thoughts' (S3)? ...Yes, it's worth looking at.

Beside the Stickle Tarn in flood,
when Langdale summons heavy rain,
the rolling becks and heavy mud

(probably not appropriate but ...
that splash each sod and country lane. ...It's one possibility.

S5,
should it be 'its tale'? ...Sonically I prefer 'a'.
'laughter' seems a bit weak, maybe something more closely related to 'tales'? ...Another good point and well worth considering.
and boasting/bragging in the Ring O'Bells ?


Regards, Not


.
Thanks again and cheers to you and the crowd in the Ring o' Bells.

JJ
Long time a child and still a child

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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by David » Sat Jul 13, 2019 6:38 pm

Nice one, JJ. Very evocative, both of pubs and of fells. I'm a fan of both.

https://ringobellskendal.webs.com/

Looks good! I'd like to think this is within walking distance for you.

Cheers!

David

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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by twoleftfeet » Sat Jul 13, 2019 8:01 pm

A very entertaining read,JJ.
Lots of detail and faultless rhyming.

Obviously the subject means a lot to you;the affection for the land,the walks - and the pub - shines through clearly.

I must confess that,as a townie,I had to gooogle HERDWICK.
In fact I anticipated from the title that the poem would be about a pub football team manager and his lieutenants
(remember Bill Shankly's boot room?) :oops:

"Pestilential socks" - a superb image, not only funny but probably medically accurate. :)

In the last line - I preferred "laughter" to "drama" which doesn't necessarily make me think of conviviality.
Perhaps "banter"?

Cheers
Geoff
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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by JJWilliamson » Sat Jul 13, 2019 8:33 pm

Thank you very much, David and Geoff, for the great comments. Appreciated.
David wrote:
Sat Jul 13, 2019 6:38 pm
Nice one, JJ. Very evocative, both of pubs and of fells. I'm a fan of both. ...Yes, I wondered if it would be of interest to fellow enthusiasts. I'm always interested in a Lake District piece and delighted this hit the mark.

https://ringobellskendal.webs.com/ ...It's still open, even though half the pubs have closed now. Prices and rates are the main problem. Landlords simply couldn't make ends meet. Great link btw. The photos show it perfectly and I've spent many an hour in the front bar, back lounge and the little outside yard to the right as we look at it. Great pub.

Looks good! I'd like to think this is within walking distance for you. ...I used to live a mere hop away.

Cheers!

David
twoleftfeet wrote:
Sat Jul 13, 2019 8:01 pm
A very entertaining read,JJ.
Lots of detail and faultless rhyming. ...Ah, good to know, Geoff. Thanks.

Obviously the subject means a lot to you;the affection for the land,the walks - and the pub - shines through clearly. ...Yes indeedy. I've been walking the fells for years and have a few Lakes poems knocking around somewhere. My wife is from the Lakes so you can blame her. :)

I must confess that,as a townie,I had to gooogle HERDWICK.
In fact I anticipated from the title that the poem would be about a pub football team manager and his lieutenants
(remember Bill Shankly's boot room?) :oops:

"Pestilential socks" - a superb image, not only funny but probably medically accurate. :)

In the last line - I preferred "laughter" to "drama" which doesn't necessarily make me think of conviviality.
Perhaps "banter"? ...I'm loving "banter". Yip, that's the image I was looking for. Consider it included. :)

Cheers
Geoff
Best to both

JJ
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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by Macavity » Sat Jul 13, 2019 8:56 pm

Muchly enjoyed JJ. I've acquired a taste for your rural write. Excellent suggestion with 'banter' for the poem to end on a convivial note (but then I was okay with laughter). My thoughts return...I thought that had a classic Prelude echo :D Not convinced by 'dream' ie I was again okay with the original linkage my thoughts/ I think (I'm sounding like David !)

cheers

mac

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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by JJWilliamson » Sun Jul 14, 2019 9:23 am

Thank you very much, mac, for the generous comments. Appreciated.
Macavity wrote:
Sat Jul 13, 2019 8:56 pm
Muchly enjoyed JJ. I've acquired a taste for your rural write. ...Ha! Well, that's nice to know. Thank you. :)

Excellent suggestion with 'banter' for the poem to end on a convivial note (but then I was okay with laughter). ...Yes, I think 'banter' edges it on the relaxed front.

My thoughts return...I thought that had a classic Prelude echo :D ...Ooh! That's a tempting thought and one that's going to be impossible to resist. :D

Not convinced by 'dream' ie I was again okay with the original linkage my thoughts/ I think (I'm sounding like David !) ...It's good to get an all-round view to iron out some of the niggles. I'll think about it some more and see what occurs.

cheers

mac
Best

JJ
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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by David » Sun Jul 14, 2019 9:34 am

Is "banter" the only change? Not a word I'm fond of. It is redolent of what the Americans call "locker-room" talk to me, with a vaguely nasty, often misogynistic edge, which I'm sure can't be appropriate here.

I much prefer laughter. To almost everything.

Cheers

David

P.S. Mac, you're mocking my characteristic tentativeness! I think.

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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by JJWilliamson » Mon Jul 15, 2019 7:30 am

Thank you very much for returning, David. The fells and ale make for a fine combination when it comes to pubs. :)
David wrote:
Sun Jul 14, 2019 9:34 am
Is "banter" the only change? ...No, I also changed 'thoughts' to 'mind' and messed about with 'think'. Still looking at that combination.

Not a word I'm fond of. It is redolent of what the Americans call "locker-room" talk to me, with a vaguely nasty, often misogynistic edge, ...Crikey! I never thought of it as being misogynistic; God forbid! I saw it as light repartee and chit-chat about the day's experiences, usually accompanied by humour. EG One day, below the buttress of Great End, I had to stop to rub some Vaseline on a sensitive area, due to sweat rash. My kind friends, unbeknown to me, took a photo of my less than gracious pose. The name of the fell and my compromised position was the source of much ribbing/banter int' pub later. I can't tell you what I called them. (I've walked with them for centuries btw). However, if that's the general understanding of 'banter' I'll rethink it tout de suite.

which I'm sure can't be appropriate here. ...No, it certainly wouldn't be. I fancied it gave the poem a modern slant, in what could be seen as Nouveau Romanticism. :)

I much prefer laughter. To almost everything. ...A good point.

Cheers

David

P.S. Mac, you're mocking my characteristic tentativeness! I think.
Great to receive such varied critique. Much to ponder.

Best

JJ

PS

I thought about using one of: chatter, babble, gossip, fiction.

J
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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by ray miller » Mon Jul 15, 2019 9:48 am

Some lovely lines, the 3rd one is my favourite. The only suggestion I'd make is that "boot and country lane" make for an odd combination and maybe "boot in country lanes" would be better.
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I contemplate such bitter stuff.

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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by NotQuiteSure » Mon Jul 15, 2019 3:13 pm

.
Hi JJ.

Not keen on banter either, and was wondering if you needed 'pub' in the title.
(The two 'boots', S4/S5, are still, to me, a problem. As, I am embarrassed to
admit, are the two 'heavies' in S4 which I've only just noticed!)

Is there a more colloquial term for 'musters'? And, similarly, one that could
replace the adjective/modifier of 'mud'?

Regards, Not.

.

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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by JJWilliamson » Mon Jul 15, 2019 5:27 pm

Hi, Not

Thanks for returning to offer some great nudges.
NotQuiteSure wrote:
Mon Jul 15, 2019 3:13 pm
.
Hi JJ.

Not keen on banter either, and was wondering if you needed 'pub' in the title. ...I definitely want to keep "pub's" as it sets the entire scene. David has me thinking about changing 'banter' but I haven't decided to what yet.
(The two 'boots', S4/S5, are still, to me, a problem. As, I am embarrassed to
admit, are the two 'heavies' in S4 which I've only just noticed!) ...I'm ok with the boots but the double 'heavy' is weird. I simply missed it and it must look like a deliberate device. I hope so, anyway. :) I've changed 'heavy mud' to "liquid mud". Thanks for that. Interestingly, it shows me that the poem is ticking along nicely, flow and content-wise.

Is there a more colloquial term for 'musters'? And, similarly, one that could
replace the adjective/modifier of 'mud'? ...I'm fine with 'musters', even though I know there are alternatives.

Regards, Not.
Best

JJ
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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by Macavity » Tue Jul 16, 2019 5:42 am

Is "banter" the only change? Not a word I'm fond of. It is redolent of what the Americans call "locker-room" talk to me, with a vaguely nasty, often misogynistic edge, which I'm sure can't be appropriate here.
I've mostly worked in an environment where the gender split is roughly even. The banter was not vaguely nasty, often misogynistic edge, but may be this was because of the particular work place and there were standards of behaviour. I don't frequent pubs. The definitions of banter allow for a range of behaviours. I suppose laughter doesn't carry any baggage.
P.S. Mac, you're mocking my characteristic tentativeness! I think.
No, just some light banter :)

best

mac

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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by Perry » Tue Jul 16, 2019 10:40 am

JJ, you haven't critiqued the last 14 poems that I have posted. I'm not going to mention that, however, because I don't want to seem petty or give the impression that I am keeping score.

I didn't post on this poem sooner because there are so many Britain-specific references in it. Here in the U.S., we don't have many old pub-like places which reek of history. Indeed, many of the old taverns, which we called "saloons", were destroyed by the temperance movement before Prohibition started about a century ago. Today, the favored decor of such places is modern, although an occasional tavern will have an old-fashioned wooden bar.

I think the poem is well-written. It flows very naturally and musically. There aren't any spots that strike me as overly awkward. If all the stuff mentioned in the poem were familiar to me, and had meaning to me, I would undoubtedly like it more.

The rhyme does strike me as very heavy, but I think it's appropriate in a light-hearted piece like this.

I think you want to capitalize "Ferny", no?
If I don't critique your poem, it is probably because I don't understand it.

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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by ray miller » Tue Jul 16, 2019 11:17 am

Perry wrote:
Tue Jul 16, 2019 10:40 am
JJ, you haven't critiqued the last 14 poems that I have posted. I'm not going to mention that, however, because I don't want to seem petty or give the impression that I am keeping score.


And here was me thinking you had no sense of humour, Perry. Pure Comedy Gold.
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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by Perry » Tue Jul 16, 2019 12:04 pm

ray miller wrote:
Tue Jul 16, 2019 11:17 am
Perry wrote:
Tue Jul 16, 2019 10:40 am
JJ, you haven't critiqued the last 14 poems that I have posted. I'm not going to mention that, however, because I don't want to seem petty or give the impression that I am keeping score.
And here was me thinking you had no sense of humour, Perry. Pure Comedy Gold.
I must have been thinking out loud.
If I don't critique your poem, it is probably because I don't understand it.

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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by 1lankest » Tue Jul 16, 2019 2:57 pm

I can only echo the others, JJ - really enjoyed this. Made me long for the hills and the musty scent of drying boots. Loved the last line and the off-rhyme - terrific and, yes, yes, highly evocative.

Luke

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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by JJWilliamson » Tue Jul 16, 2019 7:21 pm

Thanks, mac, for dropping back in to share your experiences. We all live in a world of differences, which is just fine by me. :)
Macavity wrote:
Tue Jul 16, 2019 5:42 am
Is "banter" the only change? Not a word I'm fond of. It is redolent of what the Americans call "locker-room" talk to me, with a vaguely nasty, often misogynistic edge, which I'm sure can't be appropriate here.
I've mostly worked in an environment where the gender split is roughly even. The banter was not vaguely nasty, often misogynistic edge, but may be this was because of the particular work place and there were standards of behaviour. I don't frequent pubs. The definitions of banter allow for a range of behaviours. I suppose laughter doesn't carry any baggage. Yes, 'laughter' is fine, and very accurate, but there are also the discussions and exchanges of experiences, often accompanied by ribbing, to consider. They are an integral part of the walking experience and that's why I was drawn to 'banter'. However, if there are negative connotations I'd rather eliminate that interp' to maintain the mood of the poem. It's a tricky one.

P.S. Mac, you're mocking my characteristic tentativeness! I think.
No, just some light banter :)

best

mac
Thanks, Perry, for the excellent review and critique. Much appreciated.
Perry wrote:
Tue Jul 16, 2019 10:40 am
JJ, you haven't critiqued the last 14 poems that I have posted. I'm not going to mention that, however, because I don't want to seem petty or give the impression that I am keeping score. ...Now, now, if you look further down the page you'll see I have. Glad to see you weren't keeping score. :) I can't always respond to everything, btw, but I do try to read all the new posts. No offense was intended.

I didn't post on this poem sooner because there are so many Britain-specific references in it. ... Yes indeed, it's a very local poem, following in the footsteps of some of the most famous Romantics ever to have put pen to paper. It's a favourite haunt of mine, yet I do appreciate that it might not travel very well.

Here in the U.S., we don't have many old pub-like places which reek of history. Indeed, many of the old taverns, which we called "saloons", were destroyed by the temperance movement before Prohibition started about a century ago. Today, the favored decor of such places is modern, although an occasional tavern will have an old-fashioned wooden bar. ...The English Lake District is littered with them and they are superbly evocative, almost serving as a time machine. :)

I think the poem is well-written. It flows very naturally and musically. There aren't any spots that strike me as overly awkward. If all the stuff mentioned in the poem were familiar to me, and had meaning to me, I would undoubtedly like it more. ... If you have time, Google Watendlath, Derwent Water, Grasmere, Langdale, Kendal and the Ring O' Bells and you'll get a flavour of the place. I don't know if you've ever read any William Wordsworth or Samuel Taylor Coleridge, and his son Hartley Coleridge, but they're worth the effort, for they helped to put this place on the poetic map.

The rhyme does strike me as very heavy, but I think it's appropriate in a light-hearted piece like this. ...Thanks for that.

I think you want to capitalize "Ferny", no? ...Absolutely YES! Ha! I originally had a semi in the stanza break. Good catch.
Ray! You crack me up. :D

Thanks Luke, for the warm comments. Much appreciated. I enjoyed writing this poem because it's SO representative of how I feel. I was delighted to read that it evoked some memories. Great to read that. :)

My best to all

JJ
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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by Macavity » Thu Jul 18, 2019 5:54 am

Yes, 'laughter' is fine, and very accurate, but there are also the discussions and exchanges of experiences, often accompanied by ribbing, to consider. They are an integral part of the walking experience and that's why I was drawn to 'banter'. However, if there are negative connotations I'd rather eliminate that interp' to maintain the mood of the poem. It's a tricky one.
There is a context inside the poem. Alternatively, you could try the adjective/conjunction for colouring rather than seeking a magic word option...light/warming/shared banter...warmth/laughter and banter

best

mac

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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by JJWilliamson » Fri Jul 19, 2019 6:16 pm

Thanks again, mac

Actually, I'm still looking at the alternatives, and all of the revisions, trying to come to some sort of final decision.
How is it that it often comes down to one word? :)

Thinkin'

JJ
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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by ton321 » Sat Jul 20, 2019 12:49 am

Hi JJ,

You evoked the lake district here very well. There's nothing like the smell of sweaty boots after a hard days walking! There are also notes of wet dogs drying beneath tables in this piece as well,
Tony
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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by bjondon » Sat Jul 20, 2019 12:34 pm

This is brilliant JJ . . . the sonics crackle and pop just right and the humour is really wel placed.
I think I preferred 'banter' in the last line but there's not much in it.
When I started I felt an extra ta-da in line two (maybe before 'mac') would enhance it . . . and then wondered if turning all your second lines into pentameters would put an extra spring into the step of this.
Jules

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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by JJWilliamson » Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:44 pm

Thank you very much, Jules, for the highly encouraging comments. Appreciated.
bjondon wrote:
Sat Jul 20, 2019 12:34 pm
This is brilliant JJ . . . the sonics crackle and pop just right and the humour is really wel placed. ...Can't ask for more than that. :)
I think I preferred 'banter' in the last line but there's not much in it. ...Oh, I'm going round in circles with that one. It's on again off again on again off again. I think 'banter' covers my meaning but it niggles. I'm referring to how walkers tend to chat about their experiences and the humour they use to tell the tale.
When I started I felt an extra ta-da in line two (maybe before 'mac') would enhance it . . . and then wondered if turning all your second lines into pentameters would put an extra spring into the step of this. ...Now that's an interesting thought, and one I hadn't considered. I might experiment with that idea, although I'm partial to my tet. :)
Jules
Pleased you enjoyed this trip to the Ring O' Bells and Lakes.

Best

JJ
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Re: The Pub's Boot Room (revised)

Post by JJWilliamson » Tue Jul 23, 2019 8:10 am

Thank you very much, Tony, for the warm comments. Appreciated.

Dogs indeed. You can't have a Lakes poem without the obligatory dog, even if it's only present as a possibility. I like it when readers apply their own imagery and interp'. Very gratifying.

Best

JJ
ton321 wrote:
Sat Jul 20, 2019 12:49 am
Hi JJ,

You evoked the lake district here very well. There's nothing like the smell of sweaty boots after a hard days walking! There are also notes of wet dogs drying beneath tables in this piece as well,
Tony
Long time a child and still a child

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