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06 May 2020
Assuming there is a God then surely heaven is modelled on May in the Northern hemisphere

or to be parochial an English garden in May. Like most gardeners I struggle to sit down and take in the sensory delights as there is always something to do. But wait, there are another two dimensions; sound and movement, complementing the sheer beauty. I don’t know why birds sing more and with greater voice when it’s cloudy, but on Saturday evening it was a particular cacophony hitting the senses and a manic movement of wings and feathers.

Sit in your garden and see what lives there.

The chaffinches in the Mahonia were busy flying in and out of their nest – so the chicks must have hatched. Likewise a very active robin was feeding under the big Larch, then flying back to the nest in the bay in the kitchen garden – aah so they had hatched as well. A starling dived into my swift nest box on the house – a not so common bird these days. Three pairs of blue tits; one flying in and out of a hole in the eaves of the gym, one in a similar hole in the house and one in a nestbox.

They seem really numerous this year. And my jewels; the newly arrived swallows sweeping, arcing flights of fancy and flights of bubbling joy in and out of the barn and over the lawn.

And the noise wow! A young blackbird was in the Holly behind me yelping for food, a greenfinch was at the top of the Beech hedge with its long casual reeling song. A blackbird sitting on the roof, its liquid soliloquy flowing down to my ears. One woodpigeon starts off its deep co coo, immediately bringing a response from another in the lime trees. A wren flies up to the fence post its cheerful drawn out trill, far too loud and precocious for such a tiny bird, while a Chiffchaff chiff chaffs its repetition, before being outgunned by a most beautiful blackcap matching the blackbird’s serious notes in his fine battleship grey suit and black cap.

I sit in awe and sip my wine in quiet appreciation, downing it would seem disrespectful
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