Saturday, October 04, 2008

The past cannot be forgotten while Memory lasts and Love prevails.
Janette Hospital

Dorothy Emily Grace
February 16th 1902 - October 4th 1957
Who lived life with the utmost grace and courage

Friday, October 03, 2008

Sweet Melancholy

We wake to darkness, but as the coffee perks the first pre-dawn light begins to show faint white hilltops to the east. Not snow, - oh surely not snow! As the darkness brightens it reveals clouds flirting familiarly with the Cawston Basin, hugging the hills, caressing the crevasses and flicking their skirts midway down to the valley bottom.

Caspar awakens, and he and the cat and I get ready for the early morning business trip. As we open the door and he hesitates at the top step, feeling his bearings, I am struck by the quietness as the sky covers the earth with a blanket of silence. There is not a breath of air, - the garden is still slumbering and still faintly fragrant from its nighttime scents.

We walk down the road, cat trailing behind, then ahead, - then up a tree and peering at us from the branches. There is no sound of farm machinery, no pickers gathering to work. The branches that a few days ago were laden to the ground with bright red apples once again stretch out to touch each other.

Across the valley the clouds reach half way down the hill, but the gathering light reveals the faint fall colours of the deciduous trees on K Mountain.

There is a sweetness in the country side that speaks lingeringly of melancholy, - the bright days just a memory, and the mellowness of autumn's beauty still an omen of bitter days ahead.

Mission accomplished we turn back up the lane, the dog fully awake now, with his tail wagging and his ears flapping. Cat darts into the orchard and out of sight, but I know she will be on the steps to greet us.

As our steps take us home the clouds brighten, first faintly, but as the sun climbs higher up the other side of the hills it illuminates them with some promise of a nice morning.

By the time we reach the door and I am able to retrieve the camera there is a lot of glory hanging about up there.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

"For summer, bear in mind, is a loitering gossip, that only begins to talk of leaving when September rises to go."
-   George Washington Cable

The first day of September, and the Golden Rod mingles along the road with the scarlet of the rose-hips.

And by the seventh day the Scarlet Maples are paying attention to the inner clock that tells them it's Show Time!

On the eighth day the sun catches the Cawston Hills where the grass turns Naples yellow and echoes the light of the day.

By the tenth day the Sunflower that lights up the loom room door has sixty-three blooms on it and the small birds are in a frenzy of delight.

On the twelth day morning breaks, and the heavens are on fire.

O look, on the thirteenth day 1003 bees and other assorted insects set up housekeeping in the row of tall sunflowers.

And on the eighteenth day the Chinese Lanterns (Physallis) signal with a bright orange glow that it is time to hang them to dry for winter's pleasure.

And so it goes all through the month. The roses cling to one last flush....

The Asters bloom magnificently and the 1003 bees call in reinforcements!

Down at the bottom of the pasture the sumac grows ever more colourful with each passing day. I yearn to travel the backroads, but there is still time. October is even more spectacular as all the fruit trees don gorgeous evening finery before the big winter sleep.

I spent the morning in the garden, dividing Day Lilies and Peonies, making room for little paths and a more civilized ambience.

The dry scent of a dying garden in September, 
The wind fanning the ash of a low fire. 
What I love is near at hand, 
Always, in earth and air."
-  Theodore Roethke, The Far Field

Sunday, September 28, 2008

A little whimsy...

When I was a young student there was a picture of 'A Birdseye View of an English Manor' down at the bottom of page 167 of our History Book. Or thereabouts....

It is a picture that somehow impressed the current operating neurons, and it has stayed with me all these many, many years.

Here, today, is 'A Catseye View of an English Garden' - hitherto unpublished....

That's all for tonight, - time for bed.