Wales is currently under ice, so it seems a bit strange to be thinking about summer plans. However, it is always good to review aspects of life as one year turns into another. Today's photograph reminds me of last year's summer holiday, and of the abundance of wildlife on Skye. We saw seals, otter(s), an eel, orchids, milkwort, saxifrage and ragged robin - to name but a few highlights. We looked and looked, but the sea eagles eluded us.
The flowers were beautiful in their highland-cum-island setting, but we do not all live in such a natural environment. There are times when our wild creatures and plants need a bit of a helping hand. I live on the edge of the city, and although there are fine swathes of countryside nearby, my garden is 'suburban' in feel. This is - apparently - no excuse for idleness!
I was particularly taken with a plan devised by Sarah Raven (BBC TV Gardener's World Special, 29 August 2008, directed by Juliet Graves) to encourage members of the public to preserve the face of Britain by introducing or facilitating a 'river' of wild flowers, so that protected meadows could be linked to areas of woodland. City dwellers were encouraged to find their own little patches where wild flowers could flourish, and this seems an excellent challenge for 2009.
There is scope for much creativity here! Let me know what you think.
On the subject of flowers, I wonder how many floral poems we know and love. I can think of songs ('Eidelweiss', 'My love is like a red, red rose', 'In and out the dusty bluebells', 'The Floral Dance' ...), but who can name a posy of favourite flower poems? Perhaps we should pick up our pens ... along with our seed packets.
Daffodils and primroses are already out in the Principality. It may be mid-winter, but there are signs of spring!
- Sarah Raven, TV presenter
- Bottle Rockets call for flowery Haiku submissions (& Bottle Rockets Press site)
P.S. I am still trying to identify a realistic poetic challenge for myself for 2009 : poem-a-day prompts abound in the Google listings. Meanwhile, I am enjoying some poetry features from the press ...
- Why Poetry still matters, The Independent, Boyd Tonkin
- Why Poetry matters, The Independent, Jay Parini