Early April – sitting quietly… Nature diary by James Young
Welcomed in by the glossy camellia with her shower of lipstick-kissed blossom. She has been sitting quietly, like many a love does, to blossom and kiss away the winter for another year. The lavender’s first pale advances are embraced with a promise for summer bees, as the debutante forsythia has her day. The crows in couples cluckle and snuggle their welcome to the lengthening days. The clematis is waiting on the starter’s gun of Spring to leap from the Jack-in-the box and startle with an exuberance of colour to shock spring firmly in place.
The daffodils are browned off by all this show and drop back to sleep, as the forget-me-nots try to remember a better time of the year. The plum tree, pristine in white, is marrying the air to the soil in a vow to sweeten summer with plump children dancing the May pole and colouring the summer fairs jam packed. The water butts of winter are full to the brim and ready to fire hose any drought in the nurseries of Spring, or to pour a light wine upon the newly potted shrubs, hardened off and now softening to the bud.
Tulips, regal red, priory red, are just so elegant – while their petals hold. Then the very next moment we have April showers chuckling as the pools shiver and the daffodils take a low bow at their final curtain call. Do you think it will stop? Says the dripping corkscrew hazel, as it decides to sleep on. The cat is sitting in the half open greenhouse, front paws on her tail, bored to death with eyes miles away. Then suddenly the dark evening sky has moved and a wane light at the end of the day lifts the camellia blossom into orbit. Indeed, every shrub is shining green and seem levitated and surreal.
The sunshine in the mornings is winsome and wine bright, caressing every new leaf and bud. It undulates as the thin light clouds wander lost and high-minded with a few tears dropping in April showers, and rolling in the sweet dews of Spring. The light rain shining in a wedding veil of ephemeral silk laying a silver patina on the scene. The Oxbridge boat race epitomises the jubilant teams of shrubs bursting with buds and competing for the attention of the bees. The energy of days on the feather, with birds searching in every nook and cranny for breakfast morsels for the chicks who, wide-eyed and throating like a choir in a crescendo to the sky, are endlessly demanding more, more!
The sky is pale blue on a cloudless morning. The buds on the pear tree are ticking heaven, and at mid-day, the sunlight quivers on wavelet tiaras way out in a full tide bay. With apologies to Robert Browning “Oh to be in Swansea now that April’s there” springs to mind, and our very own immortal lines are smiling on the faces of everyone, in every park, on every beach, gracing every beautiful walk around our dear Swansea on the cusp.
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His poetry can be seen here: http://baitthelines.blogspot.co.uk/
His photography can be seen here: http://jimyoung14.blogspot.co.uk/
Jim has also written a biography of his childhood in the Lower Swansea Valley: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Growing-Lower-Swansea-Valley-Memoirs/dp/1530977746