My eldest is a budding geographer. At nearly four years of age he loves reading books about the earth and its continents, its flora and fauna. We often find ourselves having quite technical discussions about the reasons why some plant or animal species are dying out, or why we have seasons. The seasons have beenContinue reading “Ordinary Wednesday: In due season”
Watchful, I spy the first buds,now only the flower’s potential,one day, soon – the fruit.Impatient, I come hereagain, again each dayto measure progress in the budding leafor to catchthe lemon in the act of ripening,quince in mid-blossom,almond in leaf.Wait, small heart.It lingers; wait.The signs are surethough August is fickle and eyes are sore.And God hasContinue reading “Signs”
In Winter’s garden bed I saw you,plucky yet tentative,white bursting but drooping at the stem,head bowed in humble prayer,hopeful of the day to come,whispering its name.
Listen: the almond has something white to announce…(Chris Wallace-Crabbe)Tiny white heralds like angels burstfrom coronawinter barren branch,whispering, echoing, promising.Listen:The time is slow but gives glimpses.The promise is faintbut continual.The season’s sure that waits in the whispers.Truer than winter, truer than spring:the eternal soon.
Against expectation, thisSpartan clipping makes spring flourish more,this cutting back to bones,to bare knobbly knuckles makesgrowth more abundant when it comes.And so we bearthe naked cruelty of these bare days,knowingagainst all experience,trusting againstbarren winter feeling,enduring againstthe buckling in our bones that wants to fall.
Reduced to its skeleton, the treeremembers days of birds in bowers,leaves atwitter,branches bent with the weight of fruit,and now bent with the wait of dayswhen flourishing’s a memory.But still the soil nurtures.Still the roots draw deep and branchesin their stasis grow in strength.Still rosehips bud where flowers didand the eagle,grace in his pinions,takes twigs andContinue reading “Bone Winter”
Winter sets in,rubs his damp feet all through the laundry,wipes his everwet hair with each handtowel,breathes ice on my windscreen,cries soggy complaints on my feet.And somewhere we are lostbetween fire and candle, lostin the long, slow ordinary that yawnsin between.Days blink; you miss the momentof daylight, the chanceto dry out and be.Only blessingspans the gapContinue reading “The Long Ordinary”
The Antarctic wakes us with its morning missive blowing. Swaddled and bubbling, children shiver across the road. Crossing guard, I open my smile, bouncing frozen legs to warm them. To cross the road like a child, I must race and look not to the side. What winter brings will soon be known; the sun stillContinue reading “The sun shines on Wyndham”
Whan that Aprille with his shoures soote, The droghte of March hath perced to the roote… (Chaucer, The Canterbury Tales) Finally the clothes are dry, the air is dry, the leaves fall in their way. Finally April ends with such crispness and we emerge, knowledge of winter on the edges of skin yet our bodiesContinue reading “The Long Drizzle”
I fought against the wind and, though I won, It threw its debris all about the place, Tossed hair asunder, tug-of-warred my face And left me with a sense of being stung. The wind did battle with the joys of sun, Though still the early spring bore marks of grace And, pulled this way andContinue reading “Late Winter”