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The Leaden Echo and the Golden Echo

Margaret Tait

UK, 1955
7 minutes, Colour, Opt.
Available formats: 16mm / HD video

An entracing translation into film of a peom by Gerard Manley Hopkins, `The Leaden Echo and the Golden Echo`. The theme is a common one in this most difficult and yet most transparently simple of all poets: all things lovely and young are doomed inevitably to decay and death – nothing can keep them away. Yet (comes back the golden echo from the grayness of the lamentation) having once existed they can never pass away: beauty is gathered and stored in granaries beyond corruption. Every film artist who attempts to interpret such a poem will do it in her own different way. I found Margaret Taits choice of individual images extraordinarily moving and evocative: the flowers, the children, the wrinkles in the mirror…
[Source: George Mackay Brown The Orcadian 13 Dec. 1979]