It’s almost as if there’s a contradiction in terms between the glories of the early English spring and this season of Covid19 horror and fear. UK stats are looking horrendous. And yet, and yet…

The natural world is breathing deeply and perhaps somehow rejuvenating more than it has for decades. Is that perhaps a providential purpose in this, or at least a part of it? Who can say? Certainly, it’s far too soon to tell.

So we turn today to Gerard Manley Hopkins SJ (1844-1889), the priest-poet who was ahead of his time in exploiting the language. But when you begin to see what he sees, the exuberance of the natural world demands nothing less. Well, we get that now, after Hopkins. It took his verbal courage to show us.

"THE ARRIVAL OF SPRING (ONE OF A 52 PART WORK)" 2011 OIL ON 32 CANVASES (36 X 48" EACH) 144 X 384" OVERALL © DAVID HOCKNEY
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