This Spring, however, is different. The past winter was, for me, the hardest I remember. Not in terms of the weather, no. But in terms of loss, of dying. In December, for the first time in almost forty years, I spent our wedding anniversary alone. Then Christmas, in the company of our two daughters, was again a first without Amanda. New Year; my birthday; Amanda's birthday..... these anniversaries passed in colourless silence. Yes, we visited Amanda in her Care Home. But, no, she could not really participate, or communicate, or recognise.
Birds everywhere. At Titchwell RSPB I saw a distant Spoonbill:
Like something almost being said;
The recent buds relax and spread,
Their greenness is a kind of grief.
Is it that they are born again
And we grow old? No, they die too,
Their yearly trick of looking new
Is written down in rings of grain.
Yet still the unresting castles thresh
In fullgrown thickness every May.
Last year is dead, they seem to say,
Begin afresh, afresh, afresh.