Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Poem a week 5: Spring is nearly here




There's a smidgen of a smidgen of colour round the oak
Like a little misty halo, like a shifting orange smoke.
There's a whisper of a whisper of flowers on the ash
Like tiny threads of cotton, like a greeny-yellow rash.
And for sure, there on the chestnut, there's a swelling sticky bud
(Though the fields around are soaking and the cows knee deep in mud.)
And the primroses are blooming, and it's fast becoming clear
There's a rumour of a rumour that spring is nearly here.
                                                                     Nick Mellersh

I wrote this in 2008 for my blog called Oak in Autumn for which I photographed an oak tree not far from home almost every day of the year.  I managed to quite a nice video of the miraculous change of the bare tree to a tree full of green. You can see it at http://www.mellersh.org/oak/ and you can learn more about this particular 600 year old tree named Yseult after a remarkable friend of ours who lived nearby.

If you looking for more poems about spring.  Hopkins sonnet  Spring  is wonderful though the second half (the sestet) is hard to grapple with unless you know something of Hopkins religion but the first bit is so wonderful who cares? I love also this by e e cummings in Just spring

If you're wondering why tiny oak leaves look sort of pinky orange, like the poem says, it's because the chlorophyll hasn't really developed yet and the main colouring is carotene. (Now late March is the time to see it - at any rate down here in the South of England)

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