Don’t tell anyone.
I don’t want to make a fuss about it.
But I think I’ve acquired a supernatural power.
I know. Unlikely. But I’ve suspected it for some time and on Sunday I decided I was right.
You see, I can summon the wind. No, really. At the push of a button. Well, even more easily than that, to be accurate.
There are some conditions, though.
I must be surrounded by evidence of Mother Nature’s generosity. In whatever form that takes.
Wild flowers, tall grasses.
Plumping fruits, buds and blossoms.
Sparkling lakes, prowling herons.
Butterflies, ladybirds, bees.
Next, I concentrate my attention on a special, distinctive, superlative – or simply interesting – gift of the Mother of all things.
… I reach for the red, shiny, metallic box I carry with me at all such times.
The box with the magical button.
And even before it’s pressed – abracadabra!
Up comes the wind.
With a sigh.
Subtle enough to make the grasses shiver. To cause the flowers to nod.
To set the fruits a-tremble – and make the winged ones fly.
Yes, my camera’s a powerful thing.
I believe it’s inhabited by a genie. Disguised as a battery.
Still, I try to catch the wilful wind unawares. And usually fail.
But on Sunday I was walking around my new, equal-favourite, local place to be.
A place I can be calm and at peace with the world. Well, except for the occasional dog-walker who can’t read, or misunderstands the term, ‘on a lead’. Or the cyclists who find it annoying to have to heave their bikes over kissing gates designed to keep them out, before riding ride on.
But set them aside. I do. And not too long, really, after they’ve passed me by.
Because it’s an enchanted place – so I can’t be annoyed for long.
My growing interest in the natural world has been bearing fruit (slowly) in the form of four seasonal fables I’m writing. Ecological fairy tales if you will. It began with the Tale of Old Mistress Winter which I shared last Christmas.
The underlying ‘moral’, an essential component of both fairy tale and fable, is that we humans should be aware how are affecting our world.
Our climate is changing, thanks to our actions, and that in turn is altering all things natural, distorting the connections that make Planet Earth work.
And on Sunday, as I struggled to find the inspiration for my tale of autumn, my new magical place lent a hand.
In a few weeks so much had changed.
Many of the blossoms of summer had already gone over.
The hawthorn’s berries, like the blackberries and elderberries, were ripening fast.
The sun being high in the sky and shade welcome, I ventured for the first time out of the Nature Reserve into the ‘forest’. Which I hope, one day it will be.
Part of my growing love of ‘nature’ in all its mutability, is an affinity with the trees. We shall all be trees, one day. One way or another.
Trees are our past, our present, our future.
This young, almost elegant forest was peaceful and welcoming. But still, all alone, unbidden thoughts came, of Little Red Riding Hood and the wicked wolf. I pushed them aside and concentrated on my quietly growing companions.
Some were already looking tired, their leaves rustling that brittle rustle they have come the last days of summer.
But together they made a restful dappled place. Of whispering boughs and fallen, golden willow leaves. Of tangled twigs and billowing banks of nettles.
I shouldn’t be surprised. Even our suburban garden weaves enchantment.
And what would be enchantment, or magic, or the faerie realm, without our earthly delight?
And who wouldn’t want to share it?
Well, the wind and I made a pact. And the wind mostly kept to it.
I would notice the beauty in ordinary things – and the wind would be my guide.
And I’ve shared some of the results.
Captured with my tiny, red, conjuring box and its shiny crimson button.
The bounty of Mother Nature, her beauty. As seen through the eyes of one beholder. And the lens of a point and shoot camera.
I’ll say farewell at that, since I need to turn to Autumn, to the tale of a mighty oak and its earthbound toes.
But I’ll leave you with a few more images, captured with the complicity of my friend, the warm west wind …
The bulrushes – reedmace if you prefer – are fattening up and browning nicely