There is something about being cold in summer that is much more chilling than being cold in winter. Another day of the claustrophobic and cold white sky weather. Sun seems well and truly blocked out, rain is on the way, I have just switched on the central heating. I grow old, I grow old, I will wear the bottom of my purples rolled – which reminds me, there is more T.S. Eliot on the box tonight. It clashes with a film called Signs, but what do I need to watch a spooky film about crop circles for? The Signs are spooky enough in my own front garden: there is something wrong with our beautiful apple tree. Some of the leaves have shrivelled and look burnt to a crisp. The tree doctor says if it is caused by insect infestation it will survive, if it is our deadly enemy Honey Fungus the tree will most likely have to be cut down. We lost a silver birch last year to that. This comes hard after the loss of our cherry tree,
two weeks it flowered in my kitchen, the scent of it painful,
like losing a sister,
like taking a bride from the altar, husbandless
– a snippet from work in progress. I observe that when I write about beauty it usually comes with pain and I also observe that I don’t write many funny poems, or if they are funny then it’s not obvious to anyone but me (someone did once say I had a kind of sly humour but neither of us were sure if that was a compliment).
And back to the trees: our next neighbour but one has cut down an ash tree. I’m sure there was a good reason for it but it has quite changed the view when one looks out of the window at the back of the house. There is always a tree issue in these parts, the forest is all around us and everything that is not forest wants to be. What with that and keeping the elementals happy one has one’s work cut out.
It has been a difficult week, I’ve been myaligicmusclebound and mainly housebound – without the former the latter would be fine in my little house, albeit with compromised view, but my neighbour (not the hot cross bun one) has had scaffolding put up by the side of his house which is hard by the side of our house. There have been days of banging, scraping and raucous banter, and I am spoiled with so much silence and birdsong, not used to the noise.
Certainly it is time for the rolled purples.