Tuesday, 28 September 2010

To Walk Beside The River

The River Beane near Stapleford

The River Beane rises near Cromer, east of Stevenage in Hertfordshire, it is a tributary of the River Lee. It used to flow through Walkern but the river's upper reaches have been somewhat depleted by over-exploitation of the chalk aquifer, however, south east of Stevenage it is fed by a number of tributaries including the Stevenage Brook, itself a charming stream with several areas of watermeadows and preserved natural habitat and as the Beane flows through Watton-At-Stone and then on through Stapleford and Waterford it becomes much more of a true river until joining the River Lee at Hartham Common near Hertford.

For this walk we join the Beane at Stapleford and amble down to Bullsmill.

To Walk Beside The River

Through the quietude of the old church yard
we make our way beside the graves
then passing through the kissing gate
to the place where the hidden pathway lies

Beside the lush green water-meadows
in Autumn winds that bring forth a shiver
we amble over the humpback bridge
once more to walk beside the river

Himalayan Balsam adorn the banks
among the Hawthorn and Weeping Willows
while Sloe berries attract the birds
Blue Tits, Wren's, Blackbirds & Sparrows

We pass through archways and tunnels green
past meadows with cows gently grazing
while the river sings its timeless song
we slowly walk in silence, listening

Tributary streams run through the woods
cut away the soft chalk, milky white
exposing ancient fossil shells
once more to this day's damp grey light

Softly at first the rain starts to fall
making ringlet patterns on the water's face
we shelter beneath the ancient Oaks
that grow here still in this special place

We tread as softly as we can
paying all due respect and reverence
But the Moorhens dart through undergrowth
somewhat cautious of our presence

In places such as this I feel
Mother Nature is a gracious giver
and I feel awed and privileged
to walk beside the river

Saturday, 18 September 2010


Ok, so on Saturday 11th September we set off for the annual Camden & Kentish Town pub crawl culminating in the Gong & Space Ritual concert at the Forum, this is a very special event on the calender for many reasons, not least, it is THE Hat's outing!

THE hat at rest in the Sir John Betchamin, St. Pancras, London.

Below, Garry takes a turn in, THE Hat.

And of course.............................................

Me in THE Hat.

But sadly, it's not ours, it is of course, the one and only, Kev's Hat

Kev in HIS Hat.


Now my mate Kevin's got an awesome hat
with a propeller on the top how cool is that?

You can even share it & wear it if you dare
but be prepared if people stop and stare

Out come the camera's clickety click
Kevin's Gonging hat is awfully chic

Now the hat went to London and we all did too
where we met a fair maiden who couldn't get a brew

The Bull and Gate pub doesn't do a cup of tea
and for a poor Gonging lass that was a misery

We suddenly noticed that Garry had disappeared
and when he came back we all clapped and cheered

For there in his hand was a steaming cup of tea
for the lass in need, such kindness you rarely see

The hat, well, it seems to have a profound effect
and lead you into situations that you don't expect

But you shouldn't be surprised at such a philosophy
it's all part of being in the Gong family

So, have a cup of tea, have another one, have a cup of tea
and come Gonging round London with my friends and me.

THE Hat takes a break at Camden Lock before leading us on to see the wonderful, Nik Turner's



After which, as Steve Hillage sang, It's All Too Much (Obviously!)
That's Kev & Garry by the way, not me as someone thought on Facebook!

Hugs & Teapots until next time.