Earlier this week we had occasion to drive into Bath. Oddly, now that I live fairly close to this beautiful city, I tend to visit less often than I used to in the past when I lived a hundred miles distant. I’m not sure why this should be other than something I’ve noticed before; that when I live close to a particular place, attraction or venue, because it’s easily accessible and always there, I tend to think – perhaps I’ll go another time – and more often than not, don’t quite get round to it! But anyway, as usual, I’m digressing.
What I really wanted to mention was the profusion of beautiful blossom that appeared as we drove down off the Mendip Hills towards Bath. I forget how high up and wind blown we are here, and though our own fruit trees are coming into blossom now, they’re definitely a week or so behind their more sheltered urban cousins.
As readers will know, every month I include a poetry corner in the Bustle & Sew Magazine, and last May (I think it was, or it may have been earlier) I included this well-known poem by A E Housman….
Loveliest of trees, the cherry now
Is hung with bloom along the bough,
And stands about the woodland ride
Wearing white for Eastertide.
Now, of my threescore years and ten,
Twenty will not come again,
And take from seventy springs a score,
It only leaves me fifty more.
And since to look at things in bloom
Fifty springs are little room,
About the woodlands I will go
To see the cherry hung with snow
Now that the weather has warmed up a little it’s time to get busy in my garden. But first I have to gather greens for the chickens who absolutely adore that other flower that blooms in profusion this month – the dandelion! They have been feasting on their “dandelion salad” and their eggs have beautiful golden yolks (sometimes double yolks) but whether or not this is due to them consuming all the dandelion flowers I would not like to say!
Can you see my “little helper” in the right hand image above? Alfie is always by my side whatever I’m doing. I think it might be that because of his deafness he relies upon sight and touch to know where I might be. I’m optimistic that I’ve finally trained him not to walk on the raised beds (at least not while I’m looking), instead of which he peers anxiously over the side hoping he hasn’t missed anything interesting!
My kitchen garden (and the chickens) were the inspiration for two of the designs in the May edition of the Bustle & Sew Magazine. Shown above they’re two vintage seed packet embroideries and the expression of surprise and alarm I imagined on Poppy’s face after she’d laid her first egg!
And, thinking of the magazine, the May edition was published on Thursday so if you’re a subscriber you should already have received it. If you haven’t spotted it in your inbox, then please do let me know.