Prongs, by L.A.G. Strong (1896-1958). A story of Johnny (8) and Danny (12), and their troubled relationships with each other and their drunken father. Prongs are the name Johnny has for the prawns he catches. They fight and argue, but the ending shows great tenderness between the boys, who really only have each other.
To the Virgins to Make Much of Time, by Robert Herrick (1591-1678) from my Treasury of the World’s Best Loved Poems. Written in 1648. This is a lyrical poem with perfect metre (I think so anyway), advising the young to ‘gather ye rosebuds while ye may/ Old Time is still a-flying...’ and live life to the full while they still have their youth. It’s a reminder that time is fleeting and ‘this same flower that smiles today/tomorrow will be dying’. I think Herrick was a priest and never married, and the poem suggests people should marry while they can, suggesting he regrets this omission in his life. I’m going to memorise this one.
The Spectator Club by Sir Richard Steele (1672-1729). A description of the gentlemen at the Spectator Club, all of whom are wealthy and ‘well-bred’. Sir Roger de Coverley is first and seems like a nice chap since he calls the servants by their names and chats to them on his way ‘upstairs’. Sir Roger is my favourite, and I would like to have met him. Like several others, he’s a bachelor, and he was rejected some years ago and reacted by refusing to follow fashions, and wears the same clothes year after year. The others are similar in being upper class well-to-do and educated men. Will Honeycomb is a womaniser who ‘where women are not concerned, he is an honest worthy man.’ He is my least favourite.
Edited the story I wrote on day 1. Not much time for anything else, but may write more later – big music day today.