Saturday, 11 January 2020


Just the worst time of the year.

So this is Wednesday and what have I done . . .?

Well, the last blog had a title I used before but not that - I ran the small mower over the grass near the house - not to cut but more to tidy it before they all go for a service. Then moving manure and compost before digging up the first of the strawberry and raspberry plants and discarding them.
New gardener has not come yet, the bank really needs strimming. The mowers service has been booked in.

Tip - R tried putting bio washing powder on the moss on the tarmac and it worked - brown and dead - so I have been outside there a-sprinkling.

The first snowdrop flowers are out, reluctantly I think, but due to the overall mild winter.

It is a delight to see snowdrops, daffodils and crocus leaves coming through - can spiring be far away?

Well, on second thoughts - yes, it can - especially when the weather is like this - wet and windy and damp and dark.

In fact the windmill in the herb pot outside the kitchen door is moving so fast it is almost invisible.

So, what to do - dig out some 2018 frozen black currants and make jam - ignore the labels - 2018 currants, 2019 and 2020 labels but all made today - Saturday. 

The wind is howling in the trees and all the lights are on in the house. We are having a mild winter but a dreary one and this year there seem to be a lot of people of my age leaving us including my cousin Scottie from London, Ontario who died in his sleep last weekend. We never met but communicated for several years. 
(The hair is a St Patrick's Day tribute).
He was actually the generation younger than me but only a few months - his father was my second cousin.

Enough - this is a time of rebirth, a new year's beginning, but I wish it could be a bit more cheerful. Mind you at least I am not underground as in this vole hole - that has a good ring about it - if we move perhaps our next house could be called The Vole Hole?

So, as I am in a cheerful mood here is an appropriate poem - 


For a full month now I have watched the rain - 
it moves in grey waves across the drenched fields, 
water-logs the turf and coalesces 
into rivulets which feed the old beck 
back of a dry-stone wall dressed in wet moss.
The gloom of a cloud ridden sky fills me
with despair, for this is man made sorrow
fuelled by greed, without consideration
for the new generations yet to come, 
for the innocent animals and plants
with which we share this world that we have ruined.

And if the sun comes through, fills the garden
with misplaced hope, I turn my face up and wait
for the warmth, for its invigoration.
If I were to stand there for long enough
I could watch the sunflowers turn their heads,
follow the sun, cold adders would emerge 
on the grassy bank and bask, gaining heat,
small birds dip their beaks in cool pond water.
When we are gone will they be gone as well? 
And will there still be sparrows in the dust,
blackbirds, wings spread, on the shed’s shingle roof?

I walk up into our small ash spinney
wrapped in my kagoul, hear the branches talk -
for trees are memory, rings of lost years.
I will be gone long before the end comes
and those organisms that survive us
outlast our dereliction of duty,
sigh with relief? I hear fine talk, promises
of action but see little being done.
We have pillaged this Eden, this small world
which circles a small peripheral star 
in one galaxy out of millions.

Too late?

1 comment:

  1. A new gardener - are you turning over the chores you do to another?