Header Image
Unlock
Are you sure you want to open the next chapter?
Yes, my GPS is not working and I would like to read on
No, thank you

STC-Stowey

Welcome to the Fly Catcher - Nether Stowey

S T Coleridge himself used to refer to his journals as Fly Catchers, as he wanted to catch ideas down before they flittered away. This project was tasked with digitally geolocating pages from Coleridge's own early journals back into the Somerset landscape which inspired him.

The enclosed extract was penned by Samuel Taylor Coleridge, written by William Wordsworth, and dedicated to Hartley Coleridge, (aged 6). Coleridge would pen and gift these poetry compendiums for friends much like a 'mix tape' of worthy works.

To view this work you must journey to Nether Stowey, Somerset.

I would like to thank both Mrs Cassam who is the current copyright holder of Coleridge's works and The British Library who have permitted me to use these images for this site specific project.

C Jelley

Instructions

 
Help
Chapter one

The Fly Catchers

This journal extract is a single page from this journal.

The manuscript from which this is an extract is held by the British Library, in London. ref MS86115 folio 34

I would like to thank both Mrs Cassam who is the current copyright holder of Coleridge's works and The British Library who have permitted me to use these images for this site specific project.
Chapter two

Other Fly Cathers

There are two other Fly Catcher journals which I have installed around West Somerset.

Porlock Weir - Kubla Khan, the most famous of Samuel Taylor Coleridge's works, and geo-located on the atmospheric harbour.

Watchet - As you walk the west harbour wall in Watchet a series of four pages from 'The Gutch Book' are revealed. These are an eclectic mix of notes from Coleridge's most famous journal.
Rather than place these texts in the village they are geo-located at Stowey Castle. These were ruins when Samuel Taylor Coleridge lived here in the late 1790's. From Nether Stowey town centre, where the clock and gaol are located, travel up Castle Street, past the infamous 'Stowey Gutters'. Castle Street then turns into Castle Hill, keep on the road to the brow as access to the tor is a gate on the right. (Do not get distracted by Butchers Lane which skirts the foot of the hill.) Once in the main field with information board on your left, the first instalment will appear. Follow the grass path which naturally circles the castle clockwise along the outer top of the ditch. A further three chapters will be triggered, one on the West, another the North, and then East of the ramparts. The final instalment is on the summit amongst the castle ruins. This path will trigger all segments. Access for wheel chair users is very poor.
 
Help
Chapter three

To Hartley Coleridge 6 years old.

O Thou! whose fancies from afar are brought;
Who of thy words dost make a mock apparel,
and fittest to unutterable thought
The breeze like motion, and the self born carol;
Thou Faery voyager! that dost float
in such clear water, that they boat
may rather seem
 
Help
Chapter four

To brood on air than on an earthly stream;
Suspended in a dream as clear as sky,
Where earth & heaven do make one imagery;
O blessed visions! happy child!
Thou art so exquisitely wild,
I think of thee with many fears
for what may be thy lot in future years.
 
Help
Chapter five

I thought of times when pain might be thy guest,
Lord of thy house & hospitality;
and greif, uneasy lover! never rest
But when she sate within the touch of thee.
Oh! too industrious folly!
Oh! vain & causeless melancholy!
Nature will either end thee quite;
 
Help
Chapter six

Of lengthening out thy season of delight,
Preserve for thee, by individual right,
a young lamb's heart among the full-grown flocks.
What hast thou to do with sorrow,
Or the infinities of tomorrow?
Thou art a Dew drop, which the morn brings forth,
Not doom'd to jostle with unkindly shocks;
Or to be trail'd along the soiling earth;
 
Help
Chapter seven

A Gem that glitters while it lives,
and no forewarning gives;
But, at the touch of wrongs, without a strife
Slips in a moment out of life.

Wordsworth.
Chapter eight

Observations

There are differences between this text and the formerly published poem which I have highlighted here.

In the printed published poem -

- But when she sat within the touch of thee.

Here it would appear to be -

- But when she sate within the touch of thee.



In the printed published poem -

- Or the injuries of to-morrow?

Here it would appear to be -

- Or the infinities of tomorrow?



In the printed published poem -

- Ill fitted to sustain unkindly shocks

Here it would appear to be -

- Not doom'd to jostle with unkindly shocks;
Chapter nine

Thank you for walking this Fly Catcher.

There are three Fly Catchers in all.

Nether Stowey, Porlock Weir and Watchet, all set in locations we have good evidence that Coleridge walked.

Visit the Coleridge Way Blog to discover other artistic projects funded by ARTlife, which have been inspired by the great Romantic Poet.

http://coleridgeway.blogspot.com

Fly Catcher project and all rights reserved Christopher Jelley http://storywalks.info

Images are copyright of The British Library and are used here with written consent.

Words are copyright of Ms P Cassam who has also given written consent for this project.

Funded by ARTlife
Chapter ten

Re-lock Points
Footer Image