On the Surrey/Hampshire Border

Gavin Ewart

Why on earth ever did (I wonder) Shaw
and Wells so much like Grayshott,
and Conan Doyle, at Hindhead, build ‘Undershaw’ –
when they might have got away, shot
of all those dark and dismal conifers,
those larches, spruces, pines, fishboney firs,

and gone on down Southwards, right on
to the clear sea and sun of Sussex
and the traditional naughtiness of Brighton,
architecture that calls as strongly as does sex?
Meanwhile, in Grayshott Post Office, sat Flora Thompson –
with enough literature to win New Statesman comps on!