Saturday, February 05, 2022

Letter from home

It has been a quiet week at Hepworth Towers, with three high spots and one low spot. 

First the low spot.

Most of my meals at home are vegetarian, but I am trying to make one vegan meal a week. Last week's was good, even though it had 53 ingredients, but this week's was a monstrous concoction of another plethora of ingredients that included aubergines, tofu and meso paste. I usually like aubergines, but this meal was horrid, and the leftovers have been accusing me every time since Tuesday night that I have opened the fridge door.

Yesterday I realised that it was making me miserable being faced with said leftovers every night when I was deciding what to make for tea. I didn't want to eat them, but it would be wasteful to throw them away. Reader, I did throw them away: the world did not cave in, but my conscience hurt. 

And the high spots of the week?

- a walk with Liz in Bradford Dale


Photo by Liz

- a walk with Dave along Curbar Edge

- and thirdly, the arrival of my new boiler suit.

Do you recall this piece I wrote about Dave and his clothes? our local agricultural suppliers he was seduced by a Dickies boiler suit in a subtle bottle green, for only £25. Here was a garment he could relate to. It was practical, comfortable, warm, commodious, cheap and had, joy of joy, 9 pockets, three of which were zipped.

But the boiler suit was so new, so comfortable, so smart, he refused to wear it for jobs such as mending the shed roof, because it might get dirty. Instead he would don it as soon as he got home from work, slipping into it as “smart leisure wear.” At the weekend he would wear nothing else, and I colluded with him, and bought him another one in navy blue.

I was on the point of persuading him that in fact they weren’t classy leisurewear, when, by some freak chance, he spotted a men’s fashion article in a colour supplement. This featured a boiler suit by Kenzo Homme, at ten times the price of his. He was trendily dressed – the only recorded time since student days.

I am a very messy painter. I get paint on my hands, my face, and my clothes, and my dungarees don't cover up everything, and I was fed up with wearing the same old T shirt and jumper underneath, so I decided to get a boiler suit, and Zoë suggested a white one, which is fun, because it will gradually colour up to look very individual.

Also, when I was ordering it online there was an option to have some wording embroidered near the pocket. Dave said I should have 'DANGER. SUE AT WORK' But I went for something else.

Have you read it yet?

And here is Larkin’s poem:


What are days for?

Days are where we live.   

They come, they wake us   

Time and time over.

They are to be happy in:   

Where can we live but days?

Ah, solving that question

Brings the priest and the doctor   

In their long coats

Running over the fields.

Philip Larkin 

The quiet view from the sofa, yesterday afternoon

Any Morning

Just lying on the couch and being happy.
Only humming a little, the quiet sound in the head.
Trouble is busy elsewhere at the moment, it has
so much to do in the world.

People who might judge are mostly asleep; they can't
monitor you all the time, and sometimes they forget.
When dawn flows over the hedge you can
get up and act busy.

Little corners like this, pieces of Heaven
left lying around, can be picked up and saved.
People won't even see that you have them,
they are so light and easy to hide.

Later in the day you can act like the others.
You can shake your head. You can frown.

William Stafford


marmee said...

What a stunning boiler suit ! Here in my part of the world we call those overalls . And in a while I presume it will resemble a Jackson Pollock!

Sue Hepworth said...

hnak you, Marmee.
Yes, it already has some nice smears of yellow and green on it.