Next To Me, A Robin



23rd October
Tonight I found winter tearing at the trees at the top of Kilndown wood. And breathing out cold air. Leaves fell from a sycamore tree onto the sumptuous wood floor.

24th-  17degrees
Small copper butterfly on purple knapweed. The Indian summer goes on inspite of the wind yesterday.

25th- 14 degrees
Two kingfishers on a stone a few feet from where I sit by the river on Dartmoor. Then one fishes from a stone in mid-stream. I watch it flip and swallow a tiny, wriggling fish.

Writings from the Woods and Fields of Dartington Hall Estate, South Devon 2006-2009.


asdA richly illustrated book for adults and children. 

Ros: ‘I started to write prose and poetry- all outdoors on scraps of paper– and throwing them into a box when I got in from my long walks and meditations. Undoubtedly that time was a watershed asdfor me-and it changed my life. Literary friends said ‘come on you have to write a book’. I discovered the box in a cupboard and finished the book I had begun years earlier.

The book was written during a difficult time in my life: I was losing my ability to see. All I wanted to do was be out in the wild woods and fields- I would find quiet places observing the wild life and flora. I rediscovered a relationship with nature I had as a child. I hope the book encapsulates a child-like joy in nature.’  


We’ve spent the last two years travelling back to Dartington throughout the changing seasons so Simon could compose illustrations for the book.  They are reminiscent of drawings by Earnest Shepherd in the famous books by A.A.Milne.   


The book is available in paperback. Three hardback editions remain, bound by nationally acclaimed binder Mary Bartlett at Dartington Bookbinding Workshop. Both editions feature quotes from Bram Bartlett’s published journal, gamekeeper and warden on the estate for many years and Mary’s husband.


Greetings cards are available -of the book illustrations with poetry on the reverse.

Ros Brady moves slowly through the natural world and observes closely, feels deeply and thinks originally : what could be asdmore important? She shares her relationship with this world through vivid writing with its unusual metaphors. The reader looks, learns and experiences life in a different way.

The strong line drawings by Simon Barron complement the clarity of the writing and illuminate this journey into a green and living land.   

Kay Dunbar, Ways With Words Festival Director


This book is inspired by the landscape and biodiversity of Dartington Hall Estate, Devon.
The author takes you by the hand and leads you to a quiet place and an intimate encounter with a vibrant  world.






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