“I want my life to have a rhythm more than anything else on earth.” ~Denton Welch, A Voice in a Cloud
Denton Welch (1915-1948) scribbled these words while recuperating from a horrible bicycle accident that would ultimately claim his life at the age of 33. Bedridden for months in a nursing home in the English countryside, he fantasized about his former life as the world continued on around him. Acutely sensitive, it was the little things he missed most, those ordinary commonplace sights and rituals that we so often take for granted but which he felt gave our lives shape and meaning.
“Sometimes anything will make you want to cry. Why do people feel so sad when they see beautiful things? That is always being mentioned; it must be quite common.”
(London café, 2014.)
“One of the nurses would wash me in the very early morning…then I would lie on my back, cross my arms and float away to an old brick house set in damp green fields in the depths of the country.”
(House spotted on a country walk, English countryside, 2012.)
“As a child I had delighted to look in at windows…they were a sort of giant dolls’ house to me.”
(Dining room at dusk, 2014.)
No memory of Denton's was too ordinary to merit a little bit of joy.
“The humdrum scene...held its own unexplained poignancy for me. The dog yapped, the tea poured, the human beings smiled without ceasing. It was as if they were all enchanted.”
“The room seemed like a brown casserole, a baked dish, warm and comforting and heavy.”
(Dinner chez friends, 2013.)
*All photos unless otherwise noted by Lisa Borgnes Giramonti.