Dorset months

January
Clinging crystals outline tree fingers,
Silver-white tracery.

Cattle exhale moist, warm plumes,
Nose into troughs via icy shards.

The grass is a sea of frozen ripples.

On crackling twigs, old berries are
Hunted hungrily by lonely birds.

February
We are tired, so tired
Of winter, whose fresh cold
We once welcomed.

At first we love
The brisk winds
Freshening our souls
As we stride booted
Through mud, then snow.

Now we yearn
For a spring that’s
Ever round an elusive corner,
A false summit caused
By rare mild days.

We are consoled only by
Log fires, duvets and
Central heating.

March
I felt it! Yes!
Not just through
A car window,
But open air,
Definite, sun-warmth.

Stay still.
Wait till
Wind drops.
And yes, there it is,
Through my fleece.

Daffodils dance
Their welcome
To an earlier rising sun,
Soaring higher,
Every day.

Our conservatory emits
Unfamiliar heat.

April
Bright green
Borders on obscene.

Lush, surging sap
Paints fields, forests and hedges

Houses are hidden, views obscured
Nature takes them back.

May
Bluebells are gone,
Just survived by
Wild garlic, turning
Woods into a
French kitchen.

We shed coats confidently,
Risking wet walks, when weather

Misbehaves, as it will.

June
Swallows fill sky,
Chatter on wires
Above our thatch,
Harvest plentiful provision
From nearby stable’s flies.

We sit on the patio,
Sip wine in the evening,
Marvel at the redness of
The lazy setting sun.


July
Yellow passes from oilseed to grass.
Where are the flowers of spring?

Birds steal our best cherries
And mice our strawberries.

Roses cheer our souls, show, with
Bright, varied petals above thorns,
That love lights our lives,
And when each dies,
Another takes its place.

August
Holidays are here.
Roads choke with caravans,
Westward marching.
Our fields fill with white cages,
And families pray for rain to end.

Captive, they tear at
Each other’s throats,
Play mindless games,
Read bad books but
Infuse Dorset
With their cash.

September
The apple rain begins.
So many from so few trees.
Winds swept fruit falls,
Uncontrolled carpet
For the lawn.

“No more apples!”
But later we’re grateful
For the all-purpose apple that
Keeps us healthy through
Winter and spring.

October
The world can’t decide
What we should wear.
Summer’s undress or
Winter’s cloak.

One day we swelter,
Shiver the next,
And light fires.

The air’s freshness 
Brings new smells.
Rain regreens our trees.

November
First frosts are welcome,
Putting paid to remaining
Infuriating insects.

Wasp nests die down,
Queens are hid,
Ready for next year’s assault.

Mud and gum boots reappear,
Trainers and sandals stashed.
Howling wind strips
Last leaves and apples.
Views reappear.

December
The first white morning;
Distant fields move near.
Eerie night-time blueness
Creates midnight sun
For these shortest days.

Despite the cold,
Season’s cheer
Penetrates all but the
Grumpiest of skins.

At month’s end, we welcome
The year, regretting the last’s
Speedy demise.
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