Sunday, 26 April 2009

The Lady and The Poet

I have a favourite spot in St Pauls Cathedral that pulls me in like a magnet whenever I step through the front door - which I try to do often.

It's a small statue, probably half sized, of John Donne, who was a dean of Old St Pauls during James I's time. He was sculpted standing on an urn wearing a shroud, 'So God will recognise me.' The urn has black marks on it and one of the handles is missing - damage done during the Great Fire of London in 1666.

The statue was saved, when so many of the cathedral treasures were lost, and stored for thirty five years during the rebuilding and was re-installed in the new cathedral. I stare at it in fascination as it once stood in the pre-Fire St Pauls and still bears scorch marks.

I am now reading, 'The Lady and The Poet' by Maeve Haran about John Donne, and Ann More, the daughter of Sir George More and Lieutenant of the Tower of London, the girl the libertine opportunist poet and fomer Catholic Donne fell in love with and secretly married in 1603, against the wishes and to the spiteful rage of her family.

My full review will go into the Historical Novel Review Blog, however I would recommend this book to those who like a seventeenth century love story that is not only poignant, but true.

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