Nature’s Vaulted Ceiling

poppy head against leaves
Closeup of poppy heads against leaves

Look at that architecture. It’s Nature’s vaulted ceiling on a poppy head.

It is also my antidote against the garbage going on in the world at the moment, which is enough to depress anyone.

I recently finished reading Travellers in the Third Reich, that I mentioned last October when I bought the book.

It’s a book of contemporary accounts of people travelling, working, holidaying, and studying in 1930s Germany.

Even after the Night Of The Long Knives, Kristallnacht, and the Nuremberg Laws, people still went there. Some liked the new mood; others hated it.

Many just didn’t let it bother them – the exchange rate was good and the German authorities were keen to present a pleasant face to visitors – so what was not to like?

Time and again, visitors comment on how neat and tidy the roadsides were, how well laid out and picture-perfect the countryside was.

I saw that myself when I first went to Germany as a teenager. It was my first time abroad, and coming back to England and driving up to Leeds I saw what a scruffy country Britain was.

So, as I said, I finished the book. And then I found myself saying something that really surprised me. With all that lebensraum, all that vile attack on the untermensch, all that violence and brutality – but they hadn’t destroyed Nature or attempted to destroy it.

And now, today, there is exactly that going on. Climate change – yes, get up in arms about it. But get up in arms about the destruction of nature. The pollution, the encroachment, the pesticides, the poaching. I can’t forgive that.

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