17 August 2020

Season of Mists

Summer's End

I'm feeling a little sluggish today.  It's been so hot, and then we had the tempest, and now it's humid.....  And everything has slowed down.  

Summer's end's around the bend just flying
The swimming suits are on the line just drying
I'll meet you there per our conversation
I hope I didn't ruin your whole vacation

Just a week or so ago I was photographing butterflies sipping nectar, and newly fledged birds were pestering their parents for food....  And then came the great heat and every living thing just hunkered down in the shade, panting for water, saving its energy.  And then it rained, for forty days and forty nights it seemed, and just about everything got in the ark and sailed away.....  And now, it's quiet.  The buzzard will perch with the dove (ok, pigeon).....

And those same wires are the gathering place for young swallows, about to dive south to avoid the cold of winter.....

My daily walks have seen the seasons swell and bloom, and now the harvest's in and seeds are ripe and young are grown, there's a peace upon the landscape, a slow, almost dull heaviness.  The hares are lacking their spring, 

Mixed flocks of tits twitter to keep together in the bushes, but they aren't singing....

There are fishermen about, filling themselves with plump young fry....

Or just enjoying the play of running waters

Most of the harvest is in.  Some fields are drying still, but the pigeons are having a field day, gleaning the fallen grains....

And the littler birds (goldfinches, sparrows, yellowhammers, et al) are feasting on thistles and other light seeds.....

And in the meantime the bees, and flies, are carrying on where the butterflies left off....  Presumably they have not been as affected by the rain?

It is strange to think that, on Ferragosto (or, if you prefer, the Feast of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary), the summer seems to have come to an end, and autumn is beginning.  Season of mellow fruitfulness?  I suppose, if you consider that Spring is getting ever earlier round here, then it is inevitable that Autumn must also creep back in the calendar?  It can hardly become later, can it?

And it may perhaps be in my imagination that these misty days are autumnal, but see these pictures, all taken in the last day or three:



Field Maple




Sloes - Blackthorn

Acorns - Sessile Oak

Acorns -English Oak


As I said, things are slowing down.  Although swallows continue to scissor the air above the fields, their speed a reminder of how fast the time is flying,

The rest of the world is slipping into lethargy.  

I admit to a certain tiredness, a listless feeling that this virus has worn us all down, and that the future is a darkening tunnel.  I have no faith - not in the leaders who care more about themselves, and power, than the hot-polloi.  Nor in any hope that life will return to 'normal' at the end of this tunnel.  There are good things, of course, and, for my part at least, things could be much worse.  

But I am feeling sluggish.... 

Forgive me.....

The moon and stars hang out in bars just talking
I still love that picture of us walking
Just like that ol' house we thought was haunted
Summer's end came faster than we wanted

Come on home
Come on home
No you don't have to be alone
Come on home
Come on home
No you don't have to be alone
Just come on home

Summer's End
John E Prine / Patrick James McLaughlin

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