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)

Thursday, 15 August 2013

August 15th.

It's been a very unsettled month so far; sun, rain, winds, humid air and sometimes a chill that feels distinctly like Autumn. Over the fields the fungi have started to pop up in profusion, there's edible field mushrooms to be picked already and many different species of toadstool climbing up through the dewy grass, looks like it's going to be a good autumn for them.

There are large flocks of martins this August too, both house and sand variety. On the brook and the river and the adjoining fields they are as numerous as clouds of flies, a fantastic breeding year for them, and as always happens, good for their predators too. Saw a hobby swooping in among a flock a couple of days ago , martins are their favourite food, which caused widespread panic and screeching. 
The Ash trees are bowed over with large amounts of keys, and it looks like there's going to be a bumper crop of acorns too-plenty of food to sustain wildlife over the winter.

An August Midnight-Thomas Hardy.
A shaded lamp and a waving blind, 
And the beat of a clock from a distant floor: 
On this scene enter--winged, horned, and spined - 
A longlegs, a moth, and a dumbledore; 
While 'mid my page there idly stands 
A sleepy fly, that rubs its hands . . . 

Thus meet we five, in this still place, 
At this point of time, at this point in space. 
- My guests parade my new-penned ink, 
Or bang at the lamp-glass, whirl, and sink. 
"God's humblest, they!" I muse. Yet why? 
They know Earth-secrets that know not I.

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