Dame Edith in February

“Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire: it is the time for home.”  ~Dame Edith Sitwell

I would like to add to that quote: winter is a time for a good book; which leads me to a book which has crossed my radar via two people, one in Virginia and one in Michigan: Rumer Godden’s In This House of BredeApparently, The Well Read Mom book club(s) are reading it, and it has made a favorable impression on these two, such that they mentioned it to me. I like Rumer Godden, one of my favorite books is The Kitchen Madonna; so I did purchase Brede and I am currently taking it up. I hope it is a good read as it remains winter in these parts, and the television is avoided as much as possible due to its unending negativity and lack of any perspective that there is a kind God who rules the universe, who cares for each one of us (noting the number of our hairs), who created the Immaculata, and who has won the victory on the Cross, etc.  Anyway, hopefully Brede is a bright spot as winter nears its end.

And, speaking of a bright spot: The Modern Lady podcast has a new release on humor: Make ’em Laugh. The two hosts are upbeat and one is left with a sense of hope after listening to them.

And, if you are looking for another bright spot, you might like to watch the old interview of Dame Edith Sitwell. She was such a delightful woman, a throwback, she would say; and if I could time travel, I would love to sit down with her for an afternoon talk by her fire, the one mentioned in the quote at the top of this post. You can find her famed television interview linked in this post (second interview in post), here.


Dame Edith, book shelf, circa 2021, a walking flame. 

To conclude, from Dame Edith, a piece of her poetry which described herself: The great sins and fires break out of me like the terrible leaves from the bough in the violent spring. I am a walking fire, I am all leaves.”  (1952, from Selected Poems)

May you have a good day!


~Top image: Dame Edith Sitwell, 1918, source.

~2/25/21, a note on this post from Mrs. Dan with suggestions for further reading: “My, that’s wonderful!  I don’t know that I’ve read any Sitwell; I’ll keep an eye out for her.  In This House of Brede is a wonderful book!  Some books by Rumer Godden are less memorable than that one, but it’s been a favorite of mine for decades.  My other favorite title by her is Five for Sorrow, Ten for Joy, which is also about a community of religious.  Also worthwhile is Prayers from the Ark, her translation of poems by Carmen Bernos de Gasztold.  That poetry reminds me of some which is mentioned in Brede; the poems by Bernos de Gasztold are not saccharine trifles, but the work of a mature poet.”