Snails

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The snails had been eating Burt’s plants again. He signed and plucked away the nibbled leaves that reminded. Hopefully, some of the plants would survive if he give them some extra care.

As for the snails, Burt got some plastic sheeting out of his shed and some metal rods he had made for this job. He constructed a mini greenhouse cover over the plants and put wooden planks on the floor to weigh the sheet down and stop the snails getting underneath.

Burt would never put out poison. He didn’t believe that was the correct way to deal with nature. The snails were just hungry and they didn’t mean to eat his plants, it was just their way. So, he wouldn’t kill them but he would stop them from getting access and encourage the snails to move on.

Being in harmony was the best way to live.

Purple Fields #3LineTales

three line tales 235: a lavender field at sunset

The heady scent of lavender sent me to my sleep. I dreamed I was waking through fields of the purple flowers. My fingers brushed the delicate blooms and their scent swam around me. Bees buzzed by and birds sing from the trees whilst above the sky was pink and orange, the sun just a smear. I could stay forever in this dream.

 

(Inspired by; https://only100words.xyz/2020/07/30/three-line-tales-235/ with thanks).

Raspberry Picking

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On the back playing fields, growing along the far edge where the children didn’t play, the raspberries grew.

I only knew about them because once I’d had a friend who lived in the houses down the lane there which backed onto that part of the field which had been left wild. It was his parents or grandparents who told him about the wild berries growing around here and he told me one summer.

Since then, I always come back here in summer to pick the wild raspberries and taste a burst of summer sweetness.

The branches hang heavy with the plum red berries which peer out shyly from large leaves. When they are ripe they fall to the long grass and bugs delight in their feast.

I bring a basket and spend a few hours taking the ripe raspberries off the plant and collecting them. Sometimes when I pause for a few moments, I put a raspberry in my mouth and enjoy it like it’s my first ever one.

At home with my prize, I put some in the freeze to keep and others I make into pies and smoothies.

I don’t know what it is but there’s something so satisfying about picking your own food.

Away

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Away, away, away we go. High above the land and into the world of the birds. Clouds like candyfloss, like soft pillows we rise through to the dawn light sky. There is the sun, Ra shinning his mightiest and touching the mountain tops.

The morning wind in our faces so fresh and clean! Far below the sea laps and reflects us. We gaze in wonder like the first people, nature spread before out feet, a bounty to delight us.

 

Summer Pickings

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I loved the pick your own farm which was close by. As I child, my parents had taken me and now, I took my own children. We visited often during summer and autumn, to pick fruits, veg and herbs. It was great to take over flowing baskets home and cook with things we had picked.

This year we were missing out. The farm was closed because of the lock down but they still delivered a weekly box of goodness to us but it wasn’t the same for me. I brought some seeds and plants online and told the children we were growing our own.

There was nothing better then plucking, deep red strawberries, plump raspberries and green heavily smelling herbs straight off the plants and out of the Earth herself.

Frog Hunting

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I didn’t want my children stuck inside whilst we home schooled. I wanted them out exploring and learning for themselves. So, we went down to the ponds and streams of the wood.

There was lots to see and because it had rained yesterday, everything was full and bright. The children took off their shoes and socks and ran barefooted like pixies as they hunted animals.

‘Look mummy! A bug!’ my youngest cried.

‘It’a beetle,’ I replied.

‘Little fishes!’ cried another.

I laughed and told them, ‘they are tadpoles. Baby frogs.’

‘They don’t look anything alike!’

Simply, I told the children how frogs grew. Fascinated, we watched the black tadpoles swimming around. Then, we heard the croak croak call of a frog.

‘Can you find him?’ I asked.

Giggling, the children dashed off and I sat back and watched their delight. Soon, my oldest came back with his hands cupped together, a proud smile lighting up his face.

‘What do you have there?’  I questioned.

He opened his hands and a large frog jumped out and landed in my lap. With an echoing croak the frog jumped again into a tall patch of grass.

‘Oh no!’ my son cried and darted after the frog.

I laughed uncontrollably.

Light

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The garden was alive. Birds were singing merrily, bees were buzzing around the blooming flowers but I wasn’t interesting. I could see the beauty of it from my back door and the way the sunlight caused a cast of shadows against the walls and flagstones.

The air was heavy with flowers, grass, damp earth and somewhere a faint hint of burnt toast. No doubt from one of my neighbours who was rushing through breakfast. I hadn’t eaten, couldn’t face the idea of food yet. I had a few sips of water and that was enough for the moment. Later, I would have a cup of tea and a biscuit.

There was nothing  wanted to do today. TV was a boring old friend, going on about the same problems. The radio was a drone of sounds that washed each other out. The birds would start to annoy me soon, they seemed too happy, too caught up in spring joy.

Why couldn’t I be as happy as them? What did they do that made then feel so good?

I stepped outside, feeling the sun like hot bath water around me. The sky was a crystal blue, too pure to be real. The flowers were too brightly coloured. They swayed in the breeze as if nodding to each other. Bees visited the blooms and carried pollen away, they large fuzzy bodies cute like children’s TV characters.

I breathed deeply and sat down in a somewhat abandoned plastic garden chair.

I didn’t want to live in the shadows anymore, the light was so much better.

Juramentrum #AtoZChallenge (Part 2)

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Juramentrum – oath

Siegfried breathed deeply and smelt the nature drifting his way. It was mid spring and everything was waking up after the long dark winter. He could smell something sweet, maybe flowers hidden from sight in the grass that covered the rocks. There was a damp earthy smell from soil that had found its way into the cracks of the rocks.

The river smelt of nothing but has he dipped his fingers into the water, Siegfried felt the coldness and smoothness of the flow. Removing his hand, he took a few sips of water from the waterskin.

He didn’t have to worry about steering the boat, it was making its own course as if being pulled along by unseen hands. The boat was also small enough to pass by and over any threatening rocks. It was a good boat. His brother, Hrothgar, had done an excellent job.

One of the old dogs yawed and Siegfried twisted to look at them. They were settling down again. Grey heads resting on the edge of the boat and their bodies curled together for warm. They looked peaceful and not worried.

Siegfried grabbed one of the furs and threw it over them. He could trust his dogs sense of things and if they weren’t worried about any danger then nor should he. It was growing colder though.

Grabbing a fur for himself, Siegfried drew it around his shoulder and noticed how dark it was getting. The height of the gorge was blocking out the warm sun and casting everything into darkness the further you entered in. Soon, he wouldn’t be able to see.

Searching in the boat’s hull, Siegfried found a lamp and lit it. Carefully and slowly, he crawled to the front of the boat and placed the lamp into its place. Going back to his seat, he found another lamp, lit it and placed it beside himself. Clutching the oar in one hand and his sword in the other, Siegfried was swallowed by darkness.

An icy wind swept down and Siegfried smelt snow in the air. It was normal of winter to hold on has long as he could and he found hiding places where the sun couldn’t find him. Siegfried hoped the river was frozen and that it didn’t start snowing. Just in case though, he threw another fur over the dogs and pulled a large one onto his head.

Siegfried might be a mighty Viking but he was old now and felt the cold stiffen his bones more and more.

Perhaps, I should have waited till the summer? he thought.

Shaking his head, Siegfried got the oar back out and began paddling again. He’d rather meet the ice sooner rather than later. A few small flakes of snow landed in his beard and boat. The darkness pressed deeper down, everything had been blocked out above him as if the gorge had a roof.

Not stopping, he rowed faster, not liking the darkness and the gathering cold.

‘This can’t go on for much longer,’ Siegfried muttered, ‘how you doing back there dogs?’

There was a muffled moan and Siegfried glanced over his shoulder but he couldn’t see the back of the boat. The light from the lamps was hardly anything but he was grateful to not be in total darkness.

He turned his face up, looking for glints of blue sky. His oar hit something hard, probably just a rock, he felt the vibrations going through his arm. Nothing to worry about. He padded faster, not liking this at all and feeling uneasy in his gut. Telling himself there had to be an end to this soon spurred him on.

There, was that a hint of blue above? Did the path ahead look lighter? Siegfried concentrated on that patch of blue and slowly came out into the light once more. Sighing, he stopped rowing and blew the lamps out. He took a few deep breaths and let the furs slip off him.

Blue sky angled it’s way into the gorge, filling the gap above the rocks. Sun cast light on green things and grey surfaces. Warm slowly tricked down to the river and soon the way widened. The river burbled along as if happy to be out of the darkness just as Siegfried was.

Pulling the oar in, he let the boat drift again. The river lapped against the wood and the shore in a calming way and carried the boat along its course. Siegfried settled back, watching more and more of the sky open above him. He could tell the gorge was coming into an end.

Shutting his eyes, he rested, feeling the cold leaving him and warmth filling him up. He dozed then when the boat slowed and began bobbing against something, Siegfried opened his eyes and saw he had arrived at the gates of Valhalla.

 

(Inspired by; http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com)

Wistful #WritePhoto

It was cool on the moor today, despite the sunshine, blue sky and spring singing in the air. I hadn’t meant to go out for a walk, I had too much to do but all day the moors had been calling me like an old friend begging for a visit.

The evenings were growing lighter now, so I thought an hour before the sunsets around seven, would be fine. Some fresh air and exercise might be good, it would help to clear my head and make me tried enough to sleep.

I changed into warm and waterproof clothes and boots, I packed a bag with a few supplies, made sure my phone was changed then set out. You never knew when things might change on the moor or if you might fall on a boggy patch of ground or trip on a rocky edge. I knew from experience what it was like to be stuck out there with nothing.

I walked straight, no direction in mind, just going where the first path took me. There was low cloud cover over some of the higher hills in the distant, the clouds were all ready turning dark with the evening light. There too where dots of sheep with early lambs nesting in the bushes. There was purple heather coming up and a few wild flowers but nothing much else grew out here.

At one high point, I stopped for a breath and some water. The air was turning colder, threatening a frost in the night. I was glad I had wrapped up. I played with the gold chain around my neck then moved on to the multi-coloured shell that hung from the links. I could name all the colours on the shell without looking; red, orange, yellow and green.

It had been a present. The last birthday gift my son had ever given me. Then a few months later, he and my husband had died in a car accident. I had barely escaped the wreak and had no memory of what had happened.

The moor helped me forget, that’s why I had moved here. It was so easy to lose yourself either staring and walking upon the moor. The seasons and weather were ever changing and there was all ways something new to see or smell or hear.

I had my escape on my doorstep and I was grateful for it.

 

(Inspired by; https://scvincent.com/2020/03/26/thursday-photo-prompt-wistful-writephoto/ with thanks).

Dear Diary

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Dear diary, spring is here but the weather doesn’t make it feel like it! The weather forecast says more smaller storms are coming and it’s going to stay cold. I guess someone should let the flowers know that!

Some crocuses and daffodils are all ready opening. This afternoon, I saw a load of snowdrops popping up on the stretches of grasses beside the road. They are hardly little things.

I’d like to do more gardening but I’m not sure I have it within me. It seems so easy to care for a plant; right soil, water, food and sunlight but something always seems to go wrong. That’s why the only plants I have are cacti and the dreaded money plant that I’m sure is immortal…

It’s hailstones again. I can hear them tapping on the window. So far it’s not been cold enough for snow and it’s been such a mild winter but I just think that’s misleading. Winter doesn’t seem over till summer arrives and snow can appear like a normal thing in the next few months.

Would the flowers survive if it did snow? I think for a little while they can do. It can be warm under snow sometimes. Flowers must know how to cope like the rest of nature.

It’ll be nice to see to the trees in leaf and the flowers in bloom again. After the gloom of winter the brightness of spring always cheers me. It’s nice being warmer and having longer days.

Though I will miss curling up under blankets, getting all warm and drinking hot chocolate. Also reading a book until I doze off and then waking up as the wind and heavy rain disturbs me.

On the other hand, I can be outside more and go to the beach and enjoy the sun. There’s so much each season can bring and I like embracing them all.