Hampstead Heath

Writing about the tea we bought in London last year reminded me of our early morning walk on Hampstead Heath (a 791 acre park) with Sue and her pugs, Bosco and Betty.

Bosco & Betty meet friends on Hampstead Heath

Hampstead Heath
by Rosanne Freed

Grassy hills damp with early morning mist,
my pashmina wrapped chador-style against the chill
I draw deep breaths of silence
while I follow the little ones, Bosco and Betty, along
paths formed over the centuries, by feet
like mine. We walk a long way
pause only to play, or munch on carrot treats.
Below Parliament Hill, London stirs
slowly, sky yellow, slivers of pink.
On the Heath many dogs, joggers, and
unbelievably, some women swimming in the icy Ladies pond.
Birds call from distant trees,
everything’s green, even the parrots.

On this rain-free Sunday morning Kenwood House tea-room
is busy, us doggie folks fill up the outside tables.
A good cup of strong English tea, plus scones and jam for us,
some pets gobbled pieces of cake,
no more snacks for Betty and Bosco tired-out on Mum’s lap.
A quiet hum of chattering birds and people.

A loud urgent bark like a “Huh?” breaks the peace.
Every dog stands up to answer
a cacophony of barking
a confusion of noise
rolls like thunder over our heads.
Laughing, hands on my ears, I look around –
no one else seems bothered by the pandemonium around us…

C.S Lewis wrote “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe”
after a walk on the heath one snowy day

the mud’s still on my shoes.

©Rosanne Freed 2010

Sue and pugs at Kenwood House

About dearrosie

We think we need so much, when all we really need is time to breathe. Come walk with me, put one foot in front of the other, and get to know yourself. Please click the link to my blog - below - and leave me a comment. I love visitors.
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6 Responses to Hampstead Heath

  1. Boris says:

    And it would be a strange, unsatisfying experience without the grace of canine company. Thanks for the evocation of a magical time and place that stands as one of the most profound of urban experiences: that human place of stillness, communion and contemplation at the heart of one of the largest, busiest and most sophisticated conurban organisms on our planet. Hampstead Heath is so much more than a city park – its humps and ponds hold history and archaeology of London over-laced by vectors and traces worn by hoof, shoe and paw in ages lost and destinations long since forgotten in the fog.

  2. Josee says:

    I now yearn for that English tea, scones, jam and morning mist.
    Thanks for the memories!

  3. Donna says:

    Thank you for sharing this evocative poem, Roseanne! You have captured the experience eloquently.

    • dearrosie says:

      Thank you Donna. I must thank you in turn for telling me – months ago – to write about this. It was so long ago that maybe you don’t even remember our conversation

  4. Barbara Rodgers says:

    A lovely poem – what a wonderful way to remember your early morning walk on Hampstead Heath! All the sights and sounds, I’d love a good strong cup of English tea about now, and I’ve never been there!

    • dearrosie says:

      Thank you for finding this little poem Barbara. I’m honored that you shared and enjoyed the early morning walk with me.

      I’m sure you must have a “Ye Olde English Shoppe” somewhere in Connecticut? For a proper cup of English tea, plus a cream scone I would drive a great distance!

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