lostworldswhathavewelost32321_f.jpgWhat have we lost and where did it go? asks Michael Bywater in Lost Worlds, a collection of observations on things that appear to be no more. These often go off into tangents which are not wholly connected with the subject at hand. He talks about the love that “then, dared not speak its name, but which is now, thank heavens, walking cheerfully about the place saying hello and introducing itself” when reminiscing about favourite armchairs, men for the use of. He asks what has happened to the Little Man when wondering about the disappearance of clerks. He refers to a mythical Scotland where stockings are still made of lisle, and no-one speaks of things Best Not Spoken Of, and which largely exists in the English mind, when considering pudeur (which I confess to having to look up in the dictionary).

I’ve been dipping into this book for weeks, often laughing out loud followed by the infliction of a particularly humorous quote on the long suffering Book God, and although I haven’t always agreed with the outcome of Bywater’s musings, the experience has been very pleasurable.