About Me

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Bristol , United Kingdom
I'm co-director of the Leaping Word Poetry Consultancy, which provides advice for poets on writing, editing and publishing, as well as qualified counselling support for those exploring personal issues in their work - https://theleapingword.com. My fifth poetry collection, Learning Finity, is now available from Indigo Dreams or directly from me.

Monday 1 March 2021

Spring sailing into view

The golfers will be back at the end of the month. In the meantime we continue our forays, monitoring for Signs of Spring. Other visitors to the course are less respectful. It's enough to make you long for a packet of paper flags. (I liked the blue Irish one with the golden harp on it best.)

During the last month, we had a very cold spell, followed by torrential rain, and finally balmy days that would have slotted into April quite happily. 

Contrary to her border collie heritage, our puppy Cwtch disdains ponds and ditches, but during the freeze she was persuaded to go out onto the ice in search of the treats we'd thrown there. (Don't worry, the water in this pond is literally a few inches deep.) 

There has been an abundance of hopeful signs that winter may indeed soon be over. Catkins, for one ... 

... and this coltsfoot, which I spotted during the wet spell, defiant in the ruins of last year's leaves. 

Oh, and this is the best thing of all, look, frogspawn! 

The rookery is noisy again, with interloping magpies spotted on a couple of occasions, much to the outrage of the resident rooks and jackdaws, while woodpeckers variously tap and screech with laughter at each other, depending on their species. These crows were engaging in a bit of oneupbirdship (literally) in a tree ...

... and here's an early Easter bunny with the foresight to put a fence between him and Cwtch before she even noticed him. 

I found myself studying some of the ancient trees with hole and hollows in them, wondering who lives in a house like this?

Of course, it's a really good time of year to go tree-watching, before they get bored with their own magnificence and start dressing up. 

After her experience with the ice, Cwtch must have thought she could walk on water because while we were trying to get her to dip her paw in, one (somewhat warmer) day, she suddenly took the plunge. 

She was even more surprised than we were, and on learning the true nature of water (duplicitous) has gone out of her way to avoid it ever since. 

Since our days on it are numbered, we've been concentrating on walking the golf course, though that doesn't mean we've ignored the meadow, wood and common, which are our all-year, faithful places to walk in. 

Charlton Common is currently the calm before the storm of spring, when it grows wild ... 

... and the ash at the entrance to the wood is worthy of sustained marvelling. 

As for the meadow, well, I just love this place so much. It's been eleven months since it became part of our physical and psychic landscape, and I can't imagine how lockdown would have been without it. I suppose we would have got through it, but it was a beautiful location for our final walks with Ted, and it's a lovely secure location for the curious Cwtch to explore. 

At exactly the same time that the rising sun has become visible from our bedroom window every morning, its setting can now be seen in the meadow, which feels like a fortuitous bit of synchronicity. 

And some things are just beautiful all year round.

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