Gloom-bust­ing ob­ser­va­tions in The Light In The Dark: A Win­ter Jour­nal by Ho­ra­tio Clare

The Simple Things - - DECEMBER THINGS - El­liott & Thomp­son)

There is win­ter weather on the hori­zon, and the clouds are gath­er­ing for Ho­ra­tio Clare. In­tensely af­fected by lack of sun­light, he dreads the com­ing of the colder months. De­ter­mined to boost his sink­ing spir­its, he lis­tens to the “thin wisps of bird­song” that come through the bare woods, aware he is “gath­er­ing ev­ery sign of life and na­ture, as though as­sem­bling touch­stones against a low­er­ing threat”. In this beau­ti­ful, lu­mi­nous book, Clare tracks the course of his moods and closely ob­serves na­ture – from the frost cling­ing to sheep’s fleece, to snow on the hills, to the slush on the city’s pave­ment – as both con­so­la­tion and salve. (

Kuro bowl | £14; can­dle­hold­ers | from £23; din­ner plate | £17; sea­grass place­mat | £25 (for four); rec­tan­gu­lar oven to ta­ble dish | £44; square dish | £35 Glam­orous, sable ceram­ics for a smart ta­ble all year round. al­so­

Shim­mer­ing milk choco­late acorns | £5 An eas­ier nut to crack. (The salted caramel pine cones are on our wish­list, too.) mark­sand­

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