Cuckoo on the hill

He is back – on the hill, calling for shy ladies in brown, outdoing the curlew. But then:

Lightening and rain
The cracks in the earth close up
The curlew is mute

He was here when we got home.
Kent was beautiful, full of pear and apple blossom:

Apple blossom at the National Fruit Collection near Faversham

We rented a cottage on the estate of a country mansion:


It was the home of the Lords Harris. The first of the line (wounded at Bunker Hill in the American war of independance) made his name in the employ of the British India company when he defeated Tipu Sultan one hot afternoon in 1798 when Tipu thought none would attack him in such heat.

We had a gatehouse:

Pigeon cottage

It was on the edge of a wood. The dawn chorus was superb as I sat in the sun with coffee.

Faversham, a quaint old town, is just down the road:


Beryl bought some nail buffers. I never use the things.

One day we went to see where Thomas Beckett was murdered:

Canterbury Cathedral

Somewhere at the far end.

Nearby is a sanctuary where endangered primates are bred for release into the wild.


The final weekend was at the Guild of Enamellers conference at Canterbury.

silver foil workshop

I made these dragonflies – quite fiddly for my thick thumbs.
My exhibit ‘Tea Garden’ (see gallery) did not win ‘best in show’ – but I signed and sold
some copies of my novel ‘Tom Fleck’ to the members and that kept me cheerful.

About Harry Nicholson

I once bred Beveren rabbits in all colours. Today, I'm an enameller who works with a kiln, fusing pictures in glass onto copper. On Amazon is my novel, 'Tom Fleck', set in the North of England of 1513 - the year of Flodden. A sequel to 'Tom Fleck' is 'The Black Caravel' published in 2016. My anthology of poems came out in 2015: 'Wandering About.' Recently I published a memoir of my time in the Merchant Navy: 'The Best of Days'. I've a blog of poems, stories and art at:
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16 Responses to Cuckoo on the hill

  1. Judith Evans says:

    Thoroughly enjoyed this refreshing, lovely post. Thanks for visiting my blog!

  2. jinksy says:

    I’m glad that cuckoo was still on the hill – even though it took me a time to find it! 🙂 I enjoyed the verse – thank you…

  3. Wow! What a fantastic trip – I enjoyed a little mini-vacation here at my desk, enjoying words and photos. The Standing Stones on your banner are amazing. Have you stood there in their presence? I have always imagined how powerful it must feel to be within their orbit.

    • Hello Sherry; they are the stones of the circle of Callanais (Callanash) on the Hebridean isle of Lewis. They are said to be older than the pyramids and Stonehenge. It is a magical place on the edge of the Atlantic – I found it very hard to leave.

  4. What lovely photos!

    And thanks so much for participating in my latest Limerick-Off!

  5. Lovely photos, Harry, and beautiful enamels! 🙂


  6. Susannah says:

    I really enjoyed your photos Harry. Thanks for sharing them. 🙂

  7. Deborah says:

    I just loved the dragonflies! and another wonderful outing :o)

  8. vivinfrance says:

    Lovely pictures, Harry. I would love one of those dragonflies for a pendant!

    • They are about 2×1.5 inch on 1mm copper – by the time one is mounted they could be a touch too heavy.

      • vivinfrance says:

        Oh well, I can dream. My easter present from Fraser was a pendant he made me (aged 9) from a piece of sea-polished glass encased in silver wire. Sally made me a thread ‘rope’ to hang it on as my neck is allergic to precious metals. (Cheap to run!)

  9. earlybird says:

    Another lovely outing with you, Harry. Thank you.

    The dragonflies are a delight. The winning enamel must indeed have been splendid to outdo the beautiful blues in Tea Garden.

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