The Flock

There were geese this morning.
In the field behind my house.
I heard the noise first.
That cackling and squabbling
of disgruntled old ladies.

Then through a gap in the hedge
they came into view.
Sixty or so I should think.
Fat Canada geese lost in the dry fields
of Nottinghamshire.

I rued my lack of long lens
as ten took to flight,
gliding not six feet above the ground until,
daintily lifting their undercarriages,
they cleared the boundary on the Eastern side.

Ten more followed the first, while
the others waddled on,
‘til, in synchronicity, they rose
chattering and flapping and nimbly forming a line
that went clear across the morning sky

Their bodies, too heavy for the ground,
looked sleek in the currents.
I waved them off, though they didn’t see me,
aimed as they were, with their arrow heads pointed
towards their mysterious, distant, destination.

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A little bit of Green

The diggers have come and destroyed the daffodils on the green,
creating a vast hole in my childhood.
The rocket ships that looked like swings,
the slide to the bottom of the big blue sea,
the café and the benches where mums sipped their tea,
all gone.

That tiny park of recreation, a slice of nature nestling
between the buildings.
Football on Saturdays, cricket on Sundays,
and marigolds on a dismal day.
The place of get togethers and breaking hearts,
all gone.

Replaced with those tick tack wall to wall houses.
Their mean gardens room enough only for a
trampoline and barbeque.
Maybe the laughter from the past will reverberate
through the lives of the families living there.
Those that have stolen my space.

Lucky Little Lady!

I’m not in the habit of entering competitions, from past experience it’s a recipe for disappointment for me.  However, this weekend I was encouraged to enter a photograph in the ‘nature and wildlife’ category at the local village flower and produce show (mostly because I wasn’t up to entering a painting and the rest of my art group were tsk…).  Anyhoo… hey… whatdayaknow… I won! Not exactly international success or fame and fortune I know, but nonetheless, I was quite chuffed, and got a certificate and everything!! So here she is, the lucky little lady:

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Dear Nature

Writing 101, day 8 – write a letter

I thought I’d drop a line to see how you are.  To be honest, I’ve been a bit worried about you lately. You seem to have been, well, let’s say, a bit of a drama queen lately.  What with all the whipping up the wind, and lashing down with the rain, and frankly, no-one likes the fog and the drizzle. Also you seem to have lost your blue paintbrush, preferring to use that nasty gun-metal grey to wash the sky.  Of course, that means there’s not a lot of green either.  Ok, the red and golds are quite nice, but really, they do look better under a sunny sky.

And while we’re on the subject… those leaves.  Look, I know there’s this arrangement with the trees, that you give their branches a rest from time to time, but please could you organise it so that you don’t get into a huff just as the leaves have fallen.  It gets so darn messy. Leaves bloomin’ everywhere.  Couldn’t you just blow them into a neat pile, instead of trying to see how much of a blanket you can cover my garden with?

Oh, and the acorns.  Look, I know trees have to procreate, but do they actually need to produce a gazillion acorns? Surely half a dozen would be enough. Let’s face it, there’s not much to be done with umpteen bins worth of acorns. Even the squirrels are quite overwhelmed.

Now, you know how much I love the animals in my garden don’t you? It’s lovely to see the birds feeding, find hedgehogs wandering about, see the squirrels running along the fence, or find tiny mouse holes here and there.  But there are just a few teeny tiny adjustments that I’d be really grateful if you could make.

Firstly, the birds.

Please ask them not to poop on my patio table. It’s really not nice.  They’ve got their own bird table to poop on if they must.

The Hedgehogs

When will they learn to keep out of the way of my dog? They wander about in the middle of the garden at night, and the dog makes a beeline for them and won’t leave them alone.  I have to go out there with a flashlight, in my jimmyjams and slippers, and physically drag her away.  Could they stay in the far corners please?  There is after all, plenty of piles of leaves for them to hide under.

The Squirrels

Oh they’re so cute.  They gallop along the top of the fence, their fluffy tails bobbing and swooshing.  They tussle entertainingly with the birds as they hurtle along branches.  They’re great.  But…. Would you see to it that they stop burying acorns in the middle of the lawn please?  I’m going to have an oak forest there this time next year I think.

The Mice

I love the mice. Their cute little hands. They’re so teeny tiny. Who’d a thunk that they could do so much damage? They’ve chewed the garden cushions that live in the shed y’know? And they find their way into my house sometimes.  If they’d just stay where they are supposed to be and eat what they’re supposed to eat we’d get along just fine.  Errmm… that goes for the spiders too.

I should elaborate.  You know I have this thing about spiders.  A phobia.  Don’t get me wrong, I don’t not like them, they just give me the heebie jeebies. They can’t help being spiders and I know they don’t really mean to scare the living daylights out of me. Why oh why oh why do they have to come into my house though? I’ve got nothing for them to eat.  Those mega granddaddy spiders who run across my carpet when I’m sitting minding my own business, they are asking for trouble (not from me, I just scream, but my husband insists on squishing the poor things).  They can live a long and quiet life if they just spin a pretty web, away from where I’m likely to walk into it (ewww…) maybe decorate the trees with their lace, and we can cohabit without incident for either of us.

Oh sorry, I seem to have gone on a bit and it’s all about my problems, but as usual, you are causing havoc across the globe one way or another – droughts here, floods there, hurricanes, earthquakes.  What the hell is that all about? It would be nice if you could take a few breaths and just calm yourself.  It would be so much easier if everywhere was temperate.  No one place too hot or too cold.  No one without water, and no-one with ruined properties.

It’s got to rain now and again, so let’s have a proper downpour that leaves proper puddles, not this general weepy dampness.  If we’ve got to have clouds, let’s have a few breaks in them so we can look up and say ‘I can see blue’ now and again. I’m sure you’d feel better for it too.

Anyhoo, I’m sorry to nag, but as I said, I’ve been a bit worried about you. However, I have to say that red sky this morning was mesmerising.  Good job!

Best wishes

K

Bores? I don’t think so!

Doing a bit of voluntary work sometimes brings the most surprising rewards.  I was assisting one of the ladies at the IT group where I teach a few weeks ago and happened to ask what her password was for something. ‘Hellebore****’ she said. Now, Hellebores happen to be amongst my favourite plants, and when we had the garden landscaped in 2013 I insisted on a bed planted only with them, so of course we got talking, and to my delight she told me that she was a Hellebore ‘breeder’ and had lots of unusual types in her garden.

This week, she invited me to go and see them and take a few ‘babies’.  Her garden is quite magical and bursting with Hellebores of all types and colours – spotty ones, double ones, ruffed ones, a quite gorgeous and rare bright yellow one… all currently in their full glory. She generously dug up seedlings and small plants and I came home with a car full!  They’ll take a couple of years to grow, but in the meantime I thought I’d share with you a few photos of those that I do have that are already in a profusion bloom!

Perfection in symmetry

Posted as part of the Daily Post photo challenge.  This weeks prompt – Symmetry

Yeah, I know, I’ve used this picture before, but frankly, I don’t really do symmetry, so had a struggle to find a suitable picture (and no, since you ask, I couldn’t think of anything to snap on this horrible cold and rainy day), but searching through my archive, the symmetry of this birds wings set in front of the most perfectly symmetrical and beautiful building in the world seemed to be the obvious choice.

The photograph was taken in the early morning, and the heavy morning mist made the Taj Mahal seem even more magical and ethereal. Seeing it then for the first time took my breath away.

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