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Doors, whether they’re ornately sophisticated, triumphant works of art or, charmingly rustic, simple and more concerned with functionality (as is more typical on a Greek island), they’ve always held a particular fascination for me.

Doors are common everyday objects that all of us use everyday without even thinking about it. They’re just something to open if we want to get’ in’ and either pass through or close behind us, when we leave. Unless they’re particularly noticeable, by their beauty or architectural significance (or unexpectedly locked), they‘re rarely paid any attention at all! Yet we all spend our lives living ‘behind closed doors’,’ opening the door of our homes’ to friends, seeking’ doors of opportunity’ etc, till eventually we arrive, as we all must, at ‘Death’s door’ and, perhaps even beyond; entering the ‘Doors to the kingdom of Heaven or Hell’

They’re often symbolically endowed with ritual purposes, and the guarding or receiving of the keys to a door, or being granted access to a door can have special significance.

Doors and doorways frequently appear in metaphorical or allegorical situations, in the arts, often as a portent of change, .and in literature (The writer Stephanie Strickland says that, ‘poems are words that take you through three kinds of doors: closed doors, secret doors, and doors you don’t know are there’,

Here are some of the doors to be found in Skiathos (accompanied by the words of (some great) poets who found inspiration, in reference to the humble door:

blue-door1.jpg‘The sparrow flies swiftly, .in through one door….out through another

Similarly, man appears on earth for a little while

But we know nothing of what went on

Before his life and what follows’

The Venerable Bede 673 – 735

‘I compare human life to a large mansion of many apartments,

Two of which I can only describe, the doors of the rest

Being as yet, shut upon me’

John Keats 1795 – 1821

whitedoor-11.jpg‘There was a door to which I found no key

There was a veil past which I could not see’


‘Myself when young did eagerly frequent,

Doctor and Saint, and heard great Argument,

About it, and about: but evermore

Came out by the same Door I went in’

– Edward Fitzgerald 1809 – 1883

wood.jpg‘Men shut their doors

Against a setting sun’

– Shakespeare 1564 – 1516, ‘Timon of Athens’

‘The sweetest thing that ever grew

Beside a human door!’

– William Wordsworth, ‘Lucy Gray’, 1770 – 1850

blue-door-4.jpg‘One., two, buckle my shoe

Three, four, knock at the door’

– Nursery rhymes

‘It was a summer evening

Old Kaspar’s work was done

And he before his cottage door

Was sitting in the sun’

– Robert Southey 1774 – 1843

blue-door-5.jpg‘A trick that everyone abhors,

In little girls is slamming doors’

Hilaire beloc 1870 – 1953

‘I seem forsaken and alone

I hear the lion roar

And every door is shut but one

And that is Mercy’s door’

William Cowper 1731 – 1800

ivydoor-9.jpg“Is there anybody there?” said the Traveller,

Knocking on the moonlit door’.

Walter De La Mare 1873 – 1956

‘Footfalls echo in the memory

Down the passage we did not take

Towards the door we never opened

Into the rose garden’

T.S. Eliot 1888 – 1965

red-door.jpg‘I see a red door and I want to paint it black’

– Rolling Stones song lyrics


‘…….Knocking at Death’s door’

Thomas Sackville 1536 – 1608

‘Knock, knock, knocking at Heaven’s door’

– Bob Dylan’s song lyrics

One thought on “Doors

  1. I agree with your comments about doors..I love
    doors..I have a friend in Athens who hangs them
    in her house instead of paintings…

    I desperately need framing done for some prints
    I have and cannot find anyone in Skiathos who
    has you?

    Also, have you met Richard Buchanan Dunlop, my
    neighbour, and had a look at his hundreds of works..



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