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Amelia Fielden / These Purple Years

  • Amelia Fielden / These Purple Years
A long while ago, I heard of an old Japanese tradition which associates the colour purple with the seventies, and endorses it as appropriate for wearing by people in that venerable age group. Then, when I turned seventy, I joined the Red Hat Society, founded in the USA in 1997 as ‘the place where there is fun over fifty’. This society takes for its motto, so to speak, a poem called ‘Warning’, by the UK poet Jenny Joseph (1932–). The first verse of ‘Warning’ begins thus:
'When I am an old woman I shall wear purple
With a red hat which doesn’t go and doesn’t suit me.
And I shall spend my pension on brandy and summer gloves
And satin sandals, and say we’ve no money for butter.
I shall sit down on the pavement when I’m tired
… And make up for the sobriety of my youth!'
A nice synchronicity between East and West, isn’t it? Loving the colour purple, I quite often wear it, not just to Red Hat Society functions. I was born in 1941, and most of the tanka in this book have been written and published during my ’purple years’.
978 1 76041 559 4, 322pp




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