What the commuter saw

Witham fields at duskThe views which roll past the window of a train soon become part of the wallpaper of regular commuting. Some views flash past so quickly that they offer only the briefest of glimpses, as captured by Robert Louis Stevenson’s “From a Railway Carriage“, while at other times they form the backdrop to sometimes long, frustrating and puzzling delays – but such delays at least provide the opportunity to contemplate this normally-glimpsed scenery in more leisurely fashion, like Edward Thomas in his gentle poem “Adlestrop“.

This scenery consists of both landscape and skyscape and while the former mostly changes at a leisurely pace throughout the year, the latter changes from day to day and minute to minute. Between them they provide not just a measure of the passing seasons but also offer some quite remarkable sights – all from the carriage window but rarely remarked on or even seen as commuters contemplate the coming day or wind down at the end of the day.

For all my fellow commuters reading your newspapers, typing on your laptops, listening to your i-Pods, catching up on your sleep, or simply gazing into space without really seeing – these images are for you…