The Path

DSCF2115The  Path  in Thomas Hardy country

“To dwellers in a wood almost every species of tree has its voice as well as its feature. At the passing of the breeze the fir-trees sob and moan no less distinctly than they rock; the holly whistles as it battles with itself; the ash hisses amid its quiverings; the beech rustles while its flat boughs rise and fall. And winter, which modifies the note of such trees as shed their leaves, does not destroy its individuality”

A wonderful description of trees by Thomas Hardy in

“Under the Green Wood Tree”

Click to access Hardy%20Country%20leaflet%2005%2006%20-%20web.pdf

Beautiful Bluebells

DSCF1873BLUEBELLS IN HARDY COUNTRY

The Bluebell

The bluebell is the sweetest flower

That waves in summer air;

Its blossoms have the mightiest power

To soothe my spirit’s care.

There is a spell in purple heath

Too wildly, sadly dear;

The violet has a fragrant breath

But fragrance will not cheer.

The trees are bare, the sun is cold;

And seldom, seldom seen;

The heavens have lost their zone of gold

The earth its robe of green;

And ice upon the glancing stream

Has cast its sombre shade

And distant hills and valleys seem

In frozen mist arrayed –

The bluebell cannot charm me now

The heath has lost its bloom,

The violets in the glen below

They yield no sweet perfume.

But though I mourn the heather-bell

‘Tis better far, away;

I know how fast my tears would swell

To see it smile today;

And that wood flower that hides so shy

Beneath the mossy stone

Its balmy scent and dewy eye:

‘Tis not for them I moan.

It is the slight and stately stem,

The blossom’s silvery blue,

The buds hid like a sapphire gem

In sheaths of emerald hue.

‘Tis these that breathe upon my heart

A calm and softening spell

That if it makes the tear-drop start

Has power to soothe as well.

For these I weep, so long divided

Through winter’s dreary day,

In longing weep–but most when guided

On withered banks to stray.

If chilly then the light should fall

Adown the dreary sky

And gild the dank and darkened wall

With transient brilliancy,

How do I yearn, how do I pine

For the time of flowers to come,

And turn me from that fading shine

To mourn the fields of home –

By Emily Bronte

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old mans beard.

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Old Man’s Beard

What we failed to see
was twines of the wild clematis
climbing all summer
through each burdened tree:

Not till the leaves were gone
did we begin to take
the measure of what strength
had fed from the limestone

That roof of feathered seed
bearding the woods now
in its snowy foliage
yet before fall of snow

And what silent cordage bound
the galaxy together where
December light reflected
from star on hairy star

Innumerably united
in a cascade, a cloud, a wing
to hang their canopy above
the roots they were strangling.

By    Charles Tomlinson