We are expecting two named storms this week – Dudley tomorrow, bringing wind, and possibly rain, and Eunice on Friday, bringing heavy snow. This winter, for all its mildness and rain, is testing me sorely. And yet—
The birds know spring is on its way. There was a pair of robins in the garden, not attacking each other, so possibly pairing up, the crows and jackdaws are working on their nests, and the woodland strip down to the park is full of birdsong. I discovered that our soil is even heavier, fuller of stones, and stickier with clay than I feared, but I have planted an apple and a damson tree, and some fruit bushes. There are more daffodils and tulips in the garden than I expected, all lengthening and greening every time I look at them, and I have a witch hazel in full flower, just waiting for the border to be cleared for it.
Other things are happening too. After two years of Zoom only launches, Red Squirrel Press have two LIVE events in the next fortnight – books by Helen Boden (A Landscape to Figure In) John Bolland (Pibroch) and Laura Fyfe (The Truth Lies) will be launched at Avant Garde
and on Saturday 26th February at 1pm in the Scottish Poetry Library in Edinburgh. You will need to book tickets to ensure covid compliance and you can do so here.
I edited all three of these, so I know you will be in for a treat.
Poetry too, is beginning to break through – no finished poems, but a couple of drafts:
Time to look at the chaffinch on the feeder
the first primrose, almost transparent
in the winter wet – look, how beautiful,
look, how stubborn persistence wins through
against frost, look, pigeons amorous already,
look, catkins, look –
And some non-fiction projects have moved from the vague pipe dream stage, to structural plans and reading lists and task sheets. There are review notes in the planning process too, but they will have to wait. In March, someone is coming to build us a LIBRARY, and until then, all the books are in boxes. There will be painting of walls to do first, because the library is in what used to be a children’s playroom, painted lemon yellow and with cut-out woodland animals on the walls. I think there was a meme going around about women wanting a cottage in a forest with a herb garden and a library – and it does look as if I am getting close!