Wednesday 8 August 2012

Fiesta Time (13): Book Lovers' Day

St Ives in Cornwall - home of Hepworth and childhood holiday destination of Woolf

Having read my 'Barbara Hepworth in St Ives' poem, Shaft of Light, Circle of Stone, at Arlington's Poetry Cafe last night, I was delighted to find a tribute to Virginia Woolf on the Oxford Dictionaries site in celebration of Book Lovers' Day.

Godrevy Lighthouse, St Ives
For many Cornwall aficionados, the lighthouse at Godrevy, near St Ives, will always resonate with Woolf's iconic book, To the Lighthouse, despite the fact that the novel (complete with lighthouse) is actually set on the Isle of Skye. However, the author spent childhood holidays at Talland House in St Ives, and one can't help feeling that some of her Cornish experiences were translated into the novel. On one occasion, Virginia's brother, Adrian, was denied a trip to Godrevy - and in the novel, James is confronted with the fact that his forthcoming visit to the lighthouse has been called off.

Don't forget to look up the other Oxford Dictionary Book Lover entries ...
I wonder what you are reading this summer. I am just coming to the end of Mehalah, an adventure set on the salt marshes around Mersea Island by Sabine Baring-Gould, and have just started Silver, Sir Andrew Motion's eagerly-awaited sequel to Treasure Island, which was written, of course, by Robert Louis, a descendant of the Lighthouse Stevensons.

And for those who are wondering, I suspect Book Lovers' Day is actually tomorrow! And for those who are also wondering, yes, Sabine Baring-Gould penned the words to 'Onward Christian Soldiers' ...