Adlestrop

Some of my favourite nature poems are short. Being poetry they often carry a message, but the poets were real wordsmiths – with a few words they drew a picture, a mood, a point of view, a celebration. Of the railway poems, Edward Thomas‘ 16 line poem about Adlestrop railway station exudes a peaceful summer afternoon from every word.

Adlestrop railway station today which was the inspiration for the Poet, Edward Thomas in the summer of 1914 when the train he was travelling on stopped 'unwontedly' at this quiet station. Disused since 1966. Image - Philip Halling.

Adlestrop railway station today which was the inspiration for the Poet, Edward Thomas in the summer of 1914 when the train he was travelling on stopped ‘unwontedly’ at this quiet station. Disused since 1966. Image – Philip Halling.

Adlestrop

by

Edward Thomas

Yes, I remember Adlestrop —
The name, because one afternoon
Of heat the express-train drew up there
Unwontedly. It was late June.

The steam hissed. Someone cleared his throat.
No one left and no one came
On the bare platform. What I saw
Was Adlestrop — only the name

And willows, willow-herb, and grass,
And meadowsweet, and haycocks dry,
No whit less still and lonely fair
Than the high cloudlets in the sky.

And for that minute a blackbird sang
Close by, and round him, mistier,
Farther and farther, all the birds
Of Oxfordshire and Gloucestershire.

Image credit – Philip Halling. Image taken from Wikimedia Commons. Licensed under Creative Commons Share-alike Attribution 2.0.

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Explore posts in the same categories: Edward Thomas, nature, poetry, railways

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3 Comments on “Adlestrop”

  1. Ava Says:

    You feel like that when you come across a tiny railway station that seems to lead nowhere. Same kind of a feeling you get when you read Ruskin Bond’s Time Stops at Shamli.


    • IMHO the best nature poems are which leave a distinct impression of natural beauty in your mind. Ruskin Bond is a past master at the genre of time standing still. Expect a review of Ruskin Bond’s nature writing in the future.

      • Ava Says:

        Expect me to follow whatever you write avidly. I am really in love with Ruskin Bond. The man never fails to impress me deeply.


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