Find The Time To Stop and Stare

I used to read poems a lot when I was younger and a couple of months ago I found an old poem book that had been on my bookshelf for 10 years untouched.

So I decided to read it as though a chapter book and I have found some that I remembered and enjoyed whilst doing my GCSE English Literature and others that I was less aware of such as Leisure by William Henry Davies.

Leisure, by W H Davies

What is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.

No time to stand beneath the boughs
And stare as long as sheep or cows.

No time to see, when woods we pass,
Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass.

No time to see, in broad daylight,
Streams full of stars, like skies at night.

No time to turn at Beauty’s glance,
And watch her feet, how they can dance.

No time to wait till her mouth can
Enrich that smile her eyes began.

A poor life this is if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.

This made me think of the things that stop me in my tracks and make me smile.

  • Watching my husband complete a race. I’m not sure if he’s aware but every race I see him finish or if I watch him go at the start I often have a lump in my throat and tears in my eyes for how proud of him I am.
  • Watching my husband be silly with the children sticking his tongue out at them or dancing like a ballerina!
  • Watching my children play together.
  • Watching my children open their presents at Christmas seeing their excitement and happy faces.
  • The breathtaking mountains and lakes of the Lake District. I’m pleased I’m not far from them and if I look out of the back of the house I can see the mountains in the distance often covered in snow at this time of year.
  • Watching Charlie our cat play he may be getting quite old but he’s recenty rediscovered the fun of chasing plastic balls!
  • Watching the birds in our garden.
  • Squirrels at work I am often left with no option to park a very long distance from my office however where I usually park in these situations is on the verge of the countryside next to some very large trees home to grey squirrels. The last time I parked there one squirrel was very photogenic so I took several pictures however my phone sadly didn’t appear to capture these moments it did however make me happy seeing it scurry around and I started my day in a much more positive frame of mind.

With the dawn of the New Year now just beginning I plan to be more mindful, taking in and holding onto as many snapshots of happiness. In the moment we sometimes miss things around us if we don’t slow down and look around, before long it will be New Years Eve again.

Wishing you all a happy and healthy year ahead.

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