Silence ~ an Advent Quest ~ a voice that is still

First Fruits, blackcurrants, my father’s favourite

Blackcurrants, my father’s favourite, the harvest begins

 

“But O for the touch of a vanish’d hand,
         And the sound of a voice that is still!”
(The flower photos underneath my plate of blackcurrants were taken by my friend and photographer, David Dobbs.)
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35 thoughts on “Silence ~ an Advent Quest ~ a voice that is still

    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Thank you, Julie. Sometimes I have to grow into poetry. This poem, which I have read many times before, suddenly had an extra dimension and feeling to it this year because I came to it after my father’s death.

      Reply
  1. Tiny

    Love to see the black currants! We always had them in our garden when I was a child and my dad prepared some juice by boiling them with sugar … until well into his 90s.

    Reply
  2. Juliet

    Nice photo, and I like the plate with berries on it as well. You do compose your photos beautifully. My dad grew black currants too. I never see them now.

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Thank you, Juliet. To survive in my garden, plants have to be hardy. I find that blackcurrants are hardy and need very little help from me. I don’t know if many people have blackcurrants in their home gardens but apparently NZ growers produce about 8000 tonnes a year. https://www.radionz.co.nz/news/country/346765/south-canterbury-blackcurrant-farm-cashes-in-on-superfood-buzz The linked article mentions Ribena. Did you drink that as a youngster? I didn’t much like it.

      Reply
  3. shoreacres

    Every now and then I meet someone who’s saved a voice message on their phone from a friend or family member now gone. It’s remarkable that we can do that now, although one of the little voices I’d like to hear again belonged to someone who never mastered the telephone, and who refused to speak into one even when offered the chance. Silly kitty!

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Indeed, sweet, silly kitty. We do have recordings of my father but, somehow, they are not what I want to listen to. I guess it’s the voice plus presence which I am really seeking.

      Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Old poets write so movingly about grief and sorrow, probably because death was so much a part of people’s lives, not so very long ago. I was probably in my 40s before I attended a funeral for the first time. I hope you had some quiet time on Saturday to sit with your memories of your father. I find it interesting that I don’t long to hug my father or touch him, I just want to hear him. 🙂

      Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Thank you, Lavinia. It was lovely to see the New Zealand prayer (which I alerted you to) in your latest post. I am thinking of using parts of it for one of my Advent images.

      Reply
  4. Michele LaFollette

    Beautiful. You do have a knack for bringing tears to my eyes. My brother’s voice so reflected his personality…upbeat, enthusiastic, curious. I often find myself listening for it…trying to replay it in my mind. I think I can still here it after 17 years, but it would be grand to sit down with him for a cup of coffee this morning. Thanks for another lovely post.

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      How lovely that would be if you could introduce him to your new home. He would be so happy and excited for you, judging from the way you describe him.

      Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Tish, he lived to 97. I think the blackcurrants must have been helpful. 😉 I like your words, ‘tongue-tingling’. Next time someone tells me that blackcurrants are sour, I will correct them and say they are tongue-tingling. 🙂

      Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Thanks, Kerry. Dad wasn’t a man of literature but, like most men of his age, was familiar with Tennyson and could recite some of his work. His mother could recite Tennyson (and others )as well. Dad often told us how good his mother was at reciting poetry.

      Reply

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