I have come across a wonderful little book. The Nature of Things by Francis Ponge was published in 1942 and describes his observations and experiences of everyday objects.


He studied things in minute detail through the senses, emotions and the intellect to produce a form of definition/description – these writings are a cross between poetry and prose. Some of the things he writes about in meticulous detail are the rain, a door, an orange, ripe blackberries and snails. Often funny and always perceptive it is a wonderful discovery – I will keep it next to the bed and delve into it often.

This is part of The Sea Shore:

Almost to its further reaches
the sea is a simple thing reiterant wave upon wave.
…. a wave
rolling in from afar unimpeded and unreproached
finally for the first time comes upon someone to speak to.
But one quick word alone
is confided to the pebbles and the shells
which seem stirred by it
and in uttering it the wave expires
as each one still to come will expire on uttering the same
speaking up from time to time in slightly rougher weather.

These photos were taken in Kynance Cove, Cornwall a while ago. There was a strong onshore wind that was pushing the water into the cove – wave overtopped wave with high rolling motions. It was mesmerising to watch the waves hit the rocks and splash upwards as they broke apart, sparkling and crystalline in the sunshine. We stayed for over an hour – motionless, watching.

cornwall october 2010 085 cornwall october 2010 083 cornwall october 2010 081 cornwall october 2010 079 cornwall october 2010 078 cornwall october 2010 076


One thought on “Waves

  1. elaine hartley

    So lovely! I am in the moment as I see your photos and think about this beautiful book. Have you ever observed a snail? I call it expanding the moment. It is magical. Thanks so much for sharing!


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