Monday, 14 July 2014

It's not grim up north

Just got back from a lovely week in Yorkshire and Cumbria (occasioned by the Tour de France). Lovely to get to another part of the country and enjoy a different array of terrain and wildlife. We swam in the River Wharfe, watched sunset over Morecambe bay, counted bats (219!) as they left eaves at dusk, and saw beautiful orchid-rich meadows swarming with butterflies (maintained by traditional grazing) and slept in a 'bee-loud glade'.  As ever I returned with more pictures of bees than anything else, which I shall spare you.

For me it was great to have the time to just be outside, soaking up the wonders of summer in England, allowing nature to come to me rather than having to fit it round other life commitments, a snatched hour here and there. It's all there waiting...

I came across this poem by John Clare that seemed apt:

In Hilly Wood
How sweet to be thus nestling deep in boughs,
Upon an ashen stoven pillowing me;
Faintly are heard the ploughmen at their ploughs,
But not an eye can find its way to see.
The sunbeams scarce molest me with a smile,
So thick the leafy armies gather round;
And where they do, the breeze blows cool the while,
Their leafy shadows dancing on the ground.
Full many a flower, too, wishing to be seen,
Perks up its head the hiding grass between.-
In mid-wood silence, thus, how sweet to be;
Where all the noises, that on peace intrude,
Come from the chittering cricket, bird, and bee,
Whose songs have charms to sweeten solitude.

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