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Feather Beds and Stone Cottages – by Gail Harker and Marilyn Olsen

November 2, 2014

Our group travelled to Stow-on-the-Wold and to Bourton-on–the-Water to take in the sights.  Entering a Cotswold village, one is immediately impressed with a warm sensation created by the color of the golden stone of the buildings.  The Cotswolds hills are made of oolitic Jurassic limestone – a kind of limestone made of small grains.  A few of us stopped at one of the old Norman churches – St. Edwards Church at Stow-on-the-Wold, built between the 11th and 15th C. This is one of the churches that benefitted from the prosperous wool trade in the area.  Our visit to the Cotswolds and other British locations  gave us an insight into Britain’s long and well recorded history. We were impressed by many facets of history that unfolded through the stories of the textiles that we saw.  Scroll all the way to the end of the poem to see a slideshow         Gail Harker

Here is a poem that Marilyn Olsen wrote :

Upon the hillside proudly stood

The fine house of the noble lord

His mighty fireplace blazing

And his wealth securely stored.

While in the valley down below

The shepherd in his smock

Lived in a humble cold stone house

And tended the lordship’s flock.

The lord’s walls were line with tapestries

His garments made with costly threads.

His wife and all his children

Slept in downy feather beds.

While in the shepherd’s cold stone house

His wife carded and spun the yarn.

And his children all slept on mats of straw

With the animals in the barn.

Today the grand house on the hill

Is no longer in royal hands

The mighty fireplace no longer blazes

The estate is public land.

While in the valley down below

The shepherd in his smock

Lives in a much warmer old stone house

And tends his very own flock.

The walls of the house on the hillside

Are still lined with tapestries and garments of golden thread

But only historical pamphlets

Mention the feather beds.

While in the stone cottage in the valley below

The shepherd shears sheep in his barn

His wife in the now warm cottage

Spins wool and sells, to tourists, the yarn.                 Marilyn Olsen

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One Comment leave one →
  1. pennypeters permalink
    November 2, 2014 6:04 pm

    So lovely to revisit the villages this morning. It was a beautiful day, and peacefully quiet with families enjoying the outdoors. Penny

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