Website of poet Elizabeth Rimmer

The New Path

sunny tarmac path littered with fallen leaves, overshadowed by beech trees

Our nearest road was closed for a couple of months while the council put in this new path for walkers and cyclists. It’s rather lovely. I took the camera there yesterday. I found the rowans!

rowan tree with many berries

This path is heavy on beech and sycamore, which gives a lot of golden leaves this time of year, and plenty of beech mast for the grey squirrels, but I found oak, holly, ivy and hazel too, and ash trees, some of which looked ominously bare. It may have been because we had an unusually dry summer, but I can’t help wondering about die-back. There are ash trees in full leaf, however, so it may not be as serious as I might have thought.

I liked these ferns, but I can’t identify them reliably.

a group of ferns, very graceful and branching

The most surprising thing was this wild apple tree. Down south there are many rogue apple trees on the edges of roads and paths, perhaps sprung from cores discarded at picnics, but I didn’t know of any in Scotland.

apple branches, few leaves one green apple against a blue sky

I think I heard a blackbird singing, which came as a relief, as I haven’t seen any blackbirds or thrushes here. I thought I’d finally seen one here

a starling perched on the top of a hawthorn tree, another on a roof

But no, it was a starling. In fact as I focussed on this picture, I saw that the whole tree was alive with starlings, sparrows (both tree sparrows and house sparrows) and coal tits, some of them only noticeable when they moved. I think birds here are quite cautious, because so many houses have cats which wander around the whole estate, but there seem to be plenty of them. I’m looking forward to getting to know them better through the winter.





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