Shop H.E. Bates Online
ID
c78
Title
"October Lake."
Genre
Essay
Page Count
1
Word Count
1150
Publisher
Spectator
Publication Year
1940
Document Types
Full-text Online
Nature Writing

Bates describes the magic of a country lake -- its leaves, lilies, waterfowl, fish, and profusion of colors -- noting that in most ways the scene is timeless and could be occurring in any century past. However, he also describes the signs of war: "None of them [countrymen of the past] would have understood the thunder that shakes the earth on days when there obviously is no thunder, the moan and stutter of a sky that seems quite empty, or the object which suddenly flowers out of the sky like a giant convolvulus of pure white silk and floats down to rest somewhere on Kentish earth. None of them would have understood -- and seeing the glowing quince-trees reflected in the calm golden October lake among the dying lily-leaves you could excuse them for it -- that this was a battlefield. In The Spectator (November 1, 1940, clxv, p. 439).


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