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April 2011
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The many beauties of spring
By Reina Free

This morning I feasted my eyes on the mauve carpet of mini cyclamens outside ‘Hedge Cottage’ in Hunts Green. What a beautiful sight to behold with small families of snowdrops interspersed amongst them.

In the hedgerow roosts a ‘Jenny Wren’. In Dutch we call it ‘Winten Kaninkje’. I know he is there as he stirs as I pass by. I tell him not to worry but he flies away, singing. I was going on to walk along the edge of Arthur Stewart Liberty Nature Reserve; Chris Ruttle has been working there, cleaning, but the soil is wet. Yet on some parts are still the once exuberant sunflowers now hanging their bedraggled heads. I am looking forward tremendously to seeing these lovely, happy flowers again.

It is still cold and the clouds hang low, I cannot see the lark but hear its jubilant singing.

On top of the neatly cut hedgerows, by the Bunce Brothers, I spy a yellowhammer which is also singing his springtime love song; when he sees me, he takes off like a mini Harrier jump-jet.

Here and there, amongst the hedgerows, are gatherings of snowdrops and, in some places, just one, all on its own and I wonder how they get there. The hazels in the hedgerows are showing off their yellow garlands but the leaves are still tightly rolled up. Only the honeysuckle, impatiently, has small green leaves.

Deliberately I observe all these things in detail in order to lift up my soul and say a prayer of thanks.

To take time to stop and stare gives a wonderful sense of inner happiness, something that can be found almost anywhere.

‘For the things of the world will grow strangely dim’ (as the hymn goes) ‘and the heart begins to sing its very own glad song’.

Thank you God.
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