nichepoetryandprose

poetry and prose about place

Posts Tagged ‘church

a Heidi picnic

with 8 comments

When I was a child, one of my favorite books was Johanna Spyri’s Heidi.  I loved reading about Heidi and Peter’s trips to the alpine meadow to watch over the goats.  And I loved the simplicity of their dinner … milk and cheese and bread.  My favorite picnic lunch is a version of theirs and I always think of it as a ‘Heidi Picnic’.

~

A week ago, my husband and I took a short vacation in the Eastern Townships of Quebec.  We followed the Route des Sommets, a trail of roadways through the elevations of the Quebec Appalachians …

~

view along the Route des Sommets in the Eastern Townships of Quebec

view along the Route des Sommets in the Eastern Townships of Quebec

~

We admired the architecture of the churches – spires and rose windows …

~

Catholic church in East Angus, Quebec

Catholic church in East Angus, Quebec

~

and we sampled the local food, squeaky cheese curds, herbed cheese, sweet honey, crisp Lobo apples, and yeasty artisan bread … our Heidi picnic …

~

our Heidi picnic in Quebec

our Heidi picnic in Quebec

~

Copyright  2014  Jane Tims

Written by jane tims

September 22, 2014 at 7:16 am

peering over hedgerows 7- 10

with 6 comments

~

7-10 yyy

Talland Bay (image from Street View)

~

7-10 1 journal

~

7-10 1 map

map showing distance travelled (map from Google Earth)

~

I am beginning to realise, the Cornwall countryside is often not visible from the road, a result of the ubiquitous ‘hedgerow’ …

~

7-10 f

peering over hedgerows (image from Street View)

~

Fortunately, there are weird trees at intervals …

~

7-10 b

eerie tree near Talland (image from Street View)

~

and places where the trees make tunnels of the road …

~

7-10 j

narrow road and natural archway (image from Street View)

~

7-10 k

natural archway (image from Street View)

~

Best View:  Church in Talland …  I tried using pen with the watercolour …  I love the big cloud … but the gravestones a bit thin and wavy …

~

IMG676_crop

July 18, 2013 ‘church in Talland’ Jane Tims

~

and the waves at Talland Bay … these waves have some frothiness compared to my painting of the beach at Millendreath (see post for August 7, 2013) …

~

IMG686_crop

July 19, 2013 ‘waves at Talland Bay’ Jane Tims

~

Copyright  2013   Jane Tims

on the way to Ile de Ré 6-1

with 2 comments

~

6-1 b

biking towards the coast (image from Street View)

~

Day 6-1 1 Logbook

~

Day 6-1 1 map

map showing distance travelled (map from Google Maps)

~

On my first day of Phase 6 of my virtual bike trip across central France, I was preoccupied with seeing the ocean (Bay of Biscay) and the coastline of France.

I stopped for a cup of tea at a small roadside bistro …

~

6-1 o

a small bistro in L’Houmeau (image from Street View)

~

I started to think about the vistas I have seen in France – both the old and the new …

~

6-1 a

Bricomarche – a chain store selling building and decorating supplies – similar to Home Depot in Canada (image from Street View)

~

I have seen the new (big grocery stores and building supply stores) as well as the old (stone houses and shops) …

~

6-1 p

street in L’Houmeau (image from Street View)

~

On some corners, I see a mix of the new and the soon to be obsolete.  This scene from France reminds me – in Canada, in the last ten years, we have also seen the introduction of recycling facilities in every public parking lot, and the loss of telephone booths from almost every outside public location …

6-1 j

recycling bins and telephone booths in L’Houmeau (image from Street View)

~

Of all the old things I saw today, I loved this old green door with its elaborate hinges, the door to a church in L’Houmeau …

~

6-1 r

~

At last, I saw the ocean, a strip of blue on the horizon just outside Les Portes Océanes …

~

6-1 zzzzzz

~

Best View: my first glimpse of the coastline and the Bay of Biscay …

~

IMG609_crop

~

Copyright  Jane Tims  2013

a stone church

with 16 comments

~

Chapelle de Sainte-Macrine

Chapelle de Sainte-Macrine (image from Street View)

~

Logbook side trip church

~

On March 13,  I strayed from my planned path to take a 3 km side trip to see the Chapelle de Sainte-Macrine.  I have seen very few churches on my virtual bike trip, since Street View follows only the main roads – churches tend to be on side streets.

~

map of side trip to Sainte-Macrine

map showing distance travelled (map from Google Maps)

~

The first part of my trip was along the Rue des Ouches (meaning garden or orchard).  True to the name, many of the properties had neat gardens…

~

garden

one of the gardens along Rue des Ouches (image from Street View)

~

The church was of stone, cross-shaped, with buttresses and a large rose window.  The buttresses project from the sides of the church and serve to reinforce its walls.  Saint Macrine was a fourth century Saint who lived in the woods near Niort, France for seven years to escape persecution…

~

Chapelle de Saint Macrine

Chapelle de Saint-Macrine (image from Street View)

~

Best View: the rose window in the church…

~

'Rose Window'

~

I have realised that by following a single route, I have missed many features of the countryside.  In Phase 4 of my virtual bike trip, I am going to plan some side trips to see some interesting features of the French countryside.

~

Don’t you think that side trips can be the best part of a journey?

~

Copyright  Jane Tims  2013

Written by jane tims

March 29, 2013 at 7:36 am

playing the parlour organ

with 12 comments

Within my grandfather’s house were rooms we were not allowed to enter, except under very special circumstances.  One of these was the parlour.

My ‘need’ to practice the piano allowed me access to this sanctum.  For each day of our vacation, I was allowed to practice on the old pump organ.  The organ belonged to my grandmother and my Dad could remember sitting on her lap while she played.

I was not an eager player and spent a lot of time testing the effect of the various ‘stops’ on the organ.  These were white knobs with mysterious black words printed on each.  When you pulled a stop, various connections were created to make the organ sound a certain way.  Now for a memory I am not sure is true or only something I imagined – one of the stops, if pulled, would make the keys play an octave below where I was playing.  They moved of their own accord and made me feel I was playing a duet with a ghostly partner!

One of the songs I chose to play on the organ was Evening Chimes.  It was an easy song and made a good impression.

'Evening Chimes', Michael Aaron Piano Course - Grade One. Mills Music Inc., New York. 1945.

Since I knew Evening Chimes by heart, my eyes could wander over the embellishments of the Victorian-aged organ as I was playing.  Its designs included flowers, leaves, exclamation marks, serpent-like creatures and four stylised figures of an octopus!  This last I could ascribe to a childish imagination, but since my sister now has my grandmother’s parlour organ,  I can verify the existence of those odd oceanic figures on the front of the organ!

~

~

Vox Angelica 8 Fţ

~

practice required

repeated bars and D.C. al fine

the E flat I could never

remember, stretch that little

finger, make it behave, do

tricky slurs and grace notes

~

to coax these from the organ

was like pounding on felt

and my feet

unused to pumping

supplied inappropriate pace

~

so I played Evening Chimes, folk song

over and over

rang church bells

imitated angels, impressed

my pious grandfather

and demonstrated piano prowess

~

© Jane Tims 2011

Written by jane tims

April 13, 2012 at 7:01 am

sacred spaces #2

with 2 comments

One of the repurposed churches I have encountered is the church where my great-grandmother and great-grandfather were married on July 24 in 1886 in Laramie, Wyoming.  The church was the First Methodist Episcopal Church on Second Street in Laramie.

The church building, constructed in 1860, still stands at 152 North Second Street, but when my great-grandparents were married there, it stood at a location across the street from its present location.  When it was abandoned as a church, it was rolled across the street on logs, where today it is the oldest church building in Laramie.

When we visited Laramie in 2002, we did not find the church immediately because it did not look like a church.  When it was rolled across the street, the back of the church faced the street…

A look at the rear of the building shows what the face of the church would have looked like in its previous location…

The church has been repurposed and today is used by a distance-training business.   Inside the church, I could see the windows overlooking the spot where once my great-grandparents stood to say their vows…

Have you gone on a journey to discover the people in your family history?  Have you stood where their feet once stood?

Written by jane tims

September 15, 2011 at 7:02 am

sacred spaces

with 7 comments

Abandoned churches are a particularly poignant reminder of how ephemeral our human spaces can be.  In most cases, churches are abandoned for reasons of practicality – the maintenance costs are too high and refurbishing costs exceed starting over. 

I think about the people who originally planned and built the church.  They needed a place to meet and worship.  They probably had a hard time pulling together the resources.  There would have been a first Sunday service in the new church, perhaps a celebration afterwards with a meal and speeches.

It was probably a heart-wrenching decision to abandon the church.  So many baptisms, weddings and funerals.  So many personal experiences of being near to God.  So many forgotten moments of amusing bored children, nodding-off during sermons, singing off-key, and greeting friends and neighbours.

Some older churches are maintained because of their heritage value, and used occasionally for special services…

Some churches are sold and repurposed, into office space, or even homes…

Some churches are abandoned entirely, left as reminders of the landscape of the past…

Although it is vacant, this old church has someone to care for it, evidenced by the mowed lawn.

 

Crataegus

~

between ruby glass

and hard wood floor

a slide of light and three

~

extinguished candles

smoke lifts from smoulder

each mote a particle

~

of spectral light, mosaic

shard, image

reassembled in three

~

dimensions

shepherd, hawthorn

lamb

~

©  Jane Tims 2011

Written by jane tims

September 14, 2011 at 4:52 pm

Posted in sacred spaces

Tagged with , ,

%d bloggers like this: