A window on the world

A quadrille for the dverse prompt. This is our bedroom window, no electricity, but the daylight’s enough for summer mornings.

Letting in the morning

Early morning,

first summer morning,

light falls on a field full of birds.

The memory of the city still echoes

with its traffic whoosh and broken voices,

but here, in cock-crowing sunrise,

this window opens, lizard-lazy,

onto the dewy peace

of a new world.


Published by

Jane Dougherty

I used to do lots of things I didn't much enjoy. Now I am officially a writer. It's what I always wanted to be.

75 thoughts on “A window on the world”

  1. Love this….LOVE the photo! and love reading this aloud 🙂 “The dewey peace of a new world” YES! 🙂 Thanks for joining in the prompt….love your response here!

    1. I’m glad you like this, Lillian. It encapsulates the musty, frusty aspect of the house when we first camped in it last summer. It’s all cleared out now, waiting for us to move our things in, but the light is the same, and there’s still no electricity in the bedroom 🙂

      1. Ha ha! No, Frank, it’s very real, insects, lizards and assorted wildlife included. Something had tunneled in under the bedroom wall while we were away in April and we had to fill in the hole before going to bed.

  2. The city sounds – whoosh & broken voices – so accurate and such a crisp contrast to the country sounds. I agree with Charley on that lizard-lazy line – such an image in that. Oh, and that picture is positively haunting!

  3. What a photograph- it’s like a time now left once captured! Radient! Is that you gazing out? Perfect words to match the scene and the sounds of where you’ve been!! Bravo Jane! And doggie on the shadows too!!!

    1. Take away electric light, or rather don’t ever install it in the first place, and this is what you get. It does look ancient, doesn’t it? And yes, that is me admiring the very early morning and the birdlife, and Finbar who gets frightened at night so has to sleep with us.

  4. This reminds me of when I lived in the countryside of France…even the kind of windows. The photo is amazing and the poem even more so. I live in an almost-rural area (thank God) but I feel a little envy creeping up.

  5. I love the photo and the poem, Jane. Glorious!
    I like my electricity, but it does make for great stuff here. 🙂
    I didn’t see Finbar at first–I lightened the photo after I saw Damien’s comment.

    1. We’re going to have to get the electricity sorted soon. Candlelight is romantic, but when you wake up in the night and want a glass of water, not so practical. Finbar still gets frightened at night if he’s left on his own so he has to sleep with us. He’s restless though, and likes to get up and make sure I’m still breathing.

      1. Awww, Finbar. It sounds like our daughter’s dog who has his bed on the window seat behind their bed, but he has to be tucked in periodically. 😉

      2. Sounds familiar. Our ‘country’ bed is very low, Finbar is very tall, and the room is very dark. It’s a bit unnerving to wake to complete silence, and find a dog’s nose within inches of your face. He has a very big nose…

  6. What a very cool photo that is. It looks like an art print. I love the cock-crowing sunrise and the lizard-lazy window, opening onto a day of retreat from urban noise…how glorious.

  7. I can only repeat what everyone else has said – glorious picture! The words are as lovely as the pic – lizard lazy – did you know if you take a blade of grass and being to tickle a lizard napping in the sun, that they will usually roll over so you can tickle their little undersides.

  8. “a field full of birds.” O my! A heavenly sight! I would love to see this every morning opening the windows. Love the photo with its light and darkness bringing home the outer and and inner world! Lovely!

    1. Thanks Sumana 🙂 That’s exactly how it feels. The bedroom behind the shutters is in cool shadow, a natural half-light, and beyond the window, the world is full of light.

  9. I just want to shove those shutters open and take an enormous breath of sunshine! Great image, lovely poem to go with it. I like the pattern you have made, building to the city chaos, coming back to peace.

    1. I like peeping through the shutters early in the morning to watch the birds. Everybody else has seen deer at the stream, even in the middle of the afternoon, except me. I’m determined to catch sight of one…

      1. Hmm…Even the crowds have their attraction and ‘silence’ their screams.. But I do prefer the latter..

      2. We need the towns, I agree. In the countryside there are no hospitals, no doctors, no shops, no work unless you’re an agricultural worker, and if you participate in the cultural life of the cities, the countryside is dead. It’s a choice in the end. We’ll see how long we last 🙂

      3. Finally someone telling the truth. It’s a choice, I agree. “How long we last”, priceless. No daydreaming, just plain facts..

      4. I love nature and hate the constant noise of the city. I don’t need much, just an internet connection. But I also hate cars, and in the countryside you have to drive everywhere, because you still have to eat, and things need replacing, and you get sick occasionally. Towns would be fine if people behaved in a civilised fashion but they don’t. Catch 22.

      5. I hope you are alright. I don’t know anything about living in the countryside.. I wanted to try it.. Maybe when I reach a certain age when I can not think about money or mobility.. Till then city has to bear me..

  10. That is such a stunning photo, Jane! How did you capture the darkness of the room, the dog in shadow and that light coming in through shutters? Lucky you; I’ve always wanted shutters after having them in every place I loved in Germany. The poem itself is gorgeous. I love the shape and in particular the lines:
    ‘…here, in cock-crowing sunrise,
    this window opens, lizard-lazy’.

    1. My youngest took the photo early morning when the only light was what came through the half-open shutters. The darkness is almost organic since the electricity is rudimentary and the rooms seem to have kept the feel of light in the daytime darkness at night.

  11. I love your your window ‘opens, lizard-lazy, onto the dewy peace of a new world’ and your son’s photograph is stunning – so good to see Finbar in there too! :o) xxx

    1. Thank you, Xenia. If the truth be told, Finbar is very wary of the countryside. I can’t imagine how he was kept when he lived in Spain, but it has left him with memories of things that go bump in the night…outside.

      1. It can take a while for dogs to create new and happier associations with the nighttime if a previous association left a deep memory. We have found it helps to play soothing classical music for a few hours after dark (especially piano). It relaxes and creates new peaceful associations 💜

  12. If one moves back and forth between city and country, the sounds of both, or lack of, carry over, I think. They each have their draw and beg us to open the windows wide.

    1. This was the first summer we’ve had the windows open on both sides of the house. The restaurant opposite closed (was closed!) and the street was peaceful. Unfortunately, a new place has now opened and having the windows open all day isn’t such a good idea any more…

      1. We did a major downsize with our move last November. Now that we are living in our patio home, I am enjoying not having so much stuff. We are still finding things we don’t need, don’t really want, don’t fit in this smaller home (my husband is shopping for a smaller reclining chair) and it’s about time to do another closet purge. Everything seems to get purged except my office which is filled with my desk, books, granddaughters’ toys and crafts, my crafts and sewing, and my exercise props. I need to push out the walls in here. It has been worth it though, I have a smaller but lovely garden to care for and lots less to clean inside. With all that extra time I cut out for myself, I can’t seem to find what I did with it. Time is like a house, you fill every bit of space you have.
        Good luck with your move. Keep me updated.

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