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April 2010: the unspoken certainty

St Dunstan, West Peckham, Kent

 

Because I could not stop for Death,

He kindly stopped for me;

The carriage held but just ourselves

And Immortality.

 

We slowly drove, he knew no haste,

And I had put away

My labour, and my leisure too,

For his civility.

 

We passed the school where children played,

Their lessons scarcely done;

We passed the fields of gazing grain,

We passed the setting sun.

 

We paused before a house that seemed

A swelling of the ground;

The roof was scarcely visible,

The cornice but a mound.

 

Since then 'tis centuries; but each

Feels shorter than the day

I first surmised the horses' heads

Were toward eternity.

 

- Emily Dickinson (1830-86)

 

Detail of an 18th Century memorial in a delicious church set on the edge of the green in a very pretty village.

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Taken on April 26, 2010