29 JANUARY 1927, Page 17


The English Cottage

O SWEET small house in the valley woodland planted, Native as acorn cupped, thatched grey as mouse, Snowdrop and robin haunted --

There is none like you, little English house ! Old as the oak you arc, in oak dark timbered, Old and how friendly with years your firelit beams. 0 well, 0 well-remembered Homestead of sailors' and of exiles' dreams !

To you in the spring bright swallows first come flying, Rosy and azure-winged thro' the April rain,

With low crooning and crying, Under your silvered brows to nest again.

In your honey'd garden of .June, what bat-winged fancies Flit in the twilight dim where fragrance dwells With dark red peonies, pansies, And nodding phlox and Canterbury bells.

Let leaves in the high wind whirl by your door and dormer, Red apple dropped long since, and fallen the flowers ; Still irised doves low murmur

And jasmine stars your walls in darkest hours.

O sweet small house ! I would find you yet, enchanted, Far in the wooded hills of England's heart, 'Twixt road and river planted, And builded strong by one who loved his art.

HAsusu Mma...tacs.

[On Wednesday the Royal Society of Arts held a conference, at which the Prime Minister presided, with the object of inaugurating a fund for the preservation of old English cottages which are being demolished or" renovated " out of recognition all over the country. Those interested should communicate with the Secretary of the Society, John Street, Adelphi, W.C. 2.--ED, Spectator.]