This afternoon the air is solid fog, a chilly blanket draped over tree and hedge. This layer is penetrated by giant water drops, descending from sky and branch, pinging off metal roofs and plastic tunnels and attempting to bury themselves in one’s scalp. The water creates a layer of slush underfoot. Beneath the slush is solid ice with a surface like greased glass. Any movement across this surface has to be at a nonagenarian’s shuffle (not something you have, Mother, obviously).
It is time to look back with nostalgia, all the way to…. last week
when skies were blue and berries red
We remember the artistic icicles
and forget the solid water bowls
(I don’t forget…
We remember the snowy hills
and forget the snowy roofs
searching for their corn,
puzzled ducks wondering why their beaks can’t penetrate the ground
and discovering that lumps of ice aren’t much use for preening
We remember the beauty of ice crystals
and forget the non-stop job of keeping the birds fed
including the Special Blackbird that comes when called and stays very close to eat
Other blackbirds appreciate our leftover apples
as do passing strangers
We recall the picturesque frost
and forget the fingers like icicles and how much work became frozen too
Life may have remained oblivious beneath the frozen pond
and the frozen ground
We were able to appreciate structures normally less visible
although the less successful were also made more obvious
It was not a time to pull a leek
but now it is a time to look back on as having skies we could see
and sights we could enjoy without having our eyes glued to the surface beneath our feet
“Records were also broken in Scotland, where the mercury hit 19.1C in Lossiemouth, and Northern Ireland, where temperatures reached 17.4C in Magilligan. Wales was the only UK nation where daily temperature records were not broken.”
humph, why are we left out?
“The record-breaking daytime temperatures came after another set of temperature records were broken overnight, with Northern Ireland and Scotland recording their highest November minimum temperatures, at 14.5C and 14.6C respectively.”
our minimum last night was 12.5 degrees, and we are at nearly 1000 feet.
The Saffron Crocus is meant to flower at this time
Full in three days when it is sometimes called the Frost Moon. Last year we had two nights of frost in November (down to minus 2) and the year before just one (minus 1) – all at the month end – so we don’t hold out much hope for it.
However, it is time for the rabbits to leave their summer camp
and say goodbye to their neighbours.
Being rabbits, they are not too sure of change
and would prefer to put their heads in a bucket
The hedgehogs have already moved on and no longer visit their night time buffet
The rabbits pass their new neighbour Dora, who lives in the sanatorium