Monday, 20 November 2017

autumn haiku

urban park—
plastic bags among
the autumn leaves 


**

previously published in Sketchbook

Sunday, 19 November 2017

A Christmas Tree in Waiting

Every year for the past several years we have had a living Christmas tree in a pot, taken from Crafty Green Boyfriend's mother's garden and  returned there after the festive season. Today we chose this year's tree, though it will be a while before we collect it and bring it home.

It was a lovely day for a wander round the garden. The apple tree is as ever laden with fruit


and the maple looks stunning in its autumn colours


and its leaves make a beautiful carpet when they fall





Saturday, 18 November 2017

Birds Drinking from a Puddle

Yesterday I wasn't able to join Crafty Green Boyfriend for his walk round Corstorphine Hill but I was very impressed by these photos he took of some birds drinking from a puddle. (Click on the photos to enlarge them)

long tailed tit and blue tit

 blue tit having a really good wash

long tailed tit arrives to watch blue tit bathing 

long tailed tits all in a row

long tailed tits in conversation 

a goldcrest

 

Friday, 17 November 2017

Witches Brooms

A little late for Hallowe'en I know, but I was impressed by the witches' brooms growing in this birch tree in Silverknowes. Now the leaves have mostly fallen the brooms are more noticeable than they usually are.



The witches broom is a growth caused by pests  or disease, for example wasps, viruses or fungi. Although they occur in a number of different species of tree, in this country at least they are most obvious in birch trees.

Thursday, 16 November 2017

Olive Tree

Dark comfort of the olive grove
protects earth from storm and drought,
offers sanctuary.

Dark fruit, plump with food and oil,
creates a whole cuisine,
supports villages.

Dark branches laden with symbolism
represent the unattainable.

Peace.


**
Another poem reposted from back in 2006! 


I also recently reposted an old poem over on my Shapeshifting Green blog, you can read it here

I've recently had a couple of poems published in online journals, you can read them by following the links below: 

Raspberry Picking on Misty Mountain Review

Rogue on Quatrain Fish.

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

Peregrine at Musselburgh Lagoons

The autumn colours are still beautiful along the wooded paths leading to Musselburgh Lagoons. This tranquil scene though hides a much more frenetic world on the Lagoons themselves!

The oystercatchers had gathered in their hundreds in a large crowd on the lagoons, along with a few curlews. They were hopping around unconcernedly as a peregrine circled overhead, divebombing the oystercatchers then flying up again to repeat the whole process. I think the apparent lack of concern from the oystercatchers' point of view was due to them knowing that if they flew off  then the peregrine would have a better chance of catching one of them - though an adult oystercatcher seems a rather large meal for a peregrine (can anyone comment on that?). After several minutes the peregrine flew off without a meal.

Later as I was walking along the River Esk returning to Musselburgh town, I saw a kingfisher flash blue under the bridge.

Then I managed to catch this cute goose, a cross between a Canada goose and a greylag (in the second photo you can see a Canada goose to the right of the photo). You often see these hybrid geese at Musselburgh.




Monday, 13 November 2017

Leaf Islands and Mysterious Balancing Stones

One of the things I love about autumn are the leaf islands that form in the mill lade next to the Water of Leith in Colinton Dell


The leaves float downstream until they collide with the stones on the bed of the lade and arrange themselves like this.

Meanwhile on the river itself the mysterious rock balancer has been at work again (click on the image to get a better view)

The autumn colours are still beautiful, here's just a selection



But some trees are already almost entirely bare