In 1906 Edith Holden started a Diary, now known as ‘The Country Diary Of An Edwardian Lady’. In it, she observed Natures cycle through the months of the year, writing simply about the weather, the birds, the flowers and the natural world around her. All the pages are beautifully ornamented with her original artwork and favourite poems. In this Blog, I’m going to try to emulate her Diary in a modern way. For a start, this is a blog on a computer, not pen and ink lovingly written on paper! However, I hope that the end result will have some similarities, in that I want to capture day by day, month by month the steady rhythm of Nature through the year. For although our 21st century lives are hectic, chaotic, noisy and deafened by electronics, the beat of the natural world, which is the backdrop to all our lives whether we notice it or not, remains ever the same. So take a sedate, gentle and steady-paced journey with me through the next year, observing the natural world. Our way of life may have changed almost beyond recognition since 1906, but nature is doing what it always has done, the cycle of nature remains constant and reassuringly predictable. In that respect, nothing has changed. ‘ No Winter lasts forever; no Spring skips its turn.’ (Hal Borland)

Monday, 24 June 2013

June 24th-Midsummer day.

Ballade (Double Refrain) Of Midsummer Days And Nights-W.E. Henley.

With a ripple of leaves and a tinkle of streams
The full world rolls in a rhythm of praise,
And the winds are one with the clouds and beams—
Midsummer days!  Midsummer days!
The dusk grows vast; in a purple haze,
While the West from a rapture of sunset rights,
Faint stars their exquisite lamps upraise—
Midsummer nights!  O midsummer nights!

The wood’s green heart is a nest of dreams,
The lush grass thickens and springs and sways,
The rathe wheat rustles, the landscape gleams—
Midsummer days!  Midsummer days!
In the stilly fields, in the stilly ways,
All secret shadows and mystic lights,
Late lovers murmur and linger and gaze—
Midsummer nights!  O midsummer nights!

There’s a music of bells from the trampling teams,
Wild skylarks hover, the gorses blaze,
The rich, ripe rose as with incense steams—
Midsummer days!  Midsummer days!
A soul from the honeysuckle strays,
And the nightingale as from prophet heights
Sings to the Earth of her million Mays—
Midsummer nights!  O midsummer nights!

And it’s O, for my dear and the charm that stays—
Midsummer days!  Midsummer days!
It’s O, for my Love and the dark that plights—
Midsummer nights!  O midsummer nights!

After a chilly, cloudy start midsummer day eventually turned into another lovely day.The fields and hedgerows are full of wild flowers, this year in particular seems to have been a very good year for them, they've all blossomed in abundance and because of the late spring they've all come at once which has meant that there has been some stunning displays of flowers especially along the banks of the lanes. There are lots of house sparrow fledgelings about, fluffy and soft-beaked, 'cheeping' loudly to frantic parents, and the flocks of starlings in thefields also have many young with them, still with brown plumage. There are two pairs of beautiful collared doves about too, but they have the unfortunate habit of sitting in the road and I'm worried they're going to get run over. The buzzards are enjoying the summer skies, gliding overhead and 'mewing', joined now by their newly flying young.

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