1 February 2018
Thin sun etched in cold hangs low in the sky offering no warmth or nourishment. All it can bring is some gentle artwork colouring the world with gold and copper and yellow.
2 February 2018
Crisp mud; surface frozen surrounding a semi-liquid ocean; disturbing shapes left after the surface has been broken by a passing paw or foot and the under layer disturbed and forced between solid blocks; and where cold enough the mud will slowly ooze and move and create new forms before a crust re-freezes.
3 February 2018
Fed and flowing full and fit the river moves majestically and magnificently in the morning light; swirling around corners almost leaning into the curves; eddies and curlicues dancing in its wake. Branches and leaf piles create obstructions that set up waves that cross in mid-stream weaving a pattern that appears to write a message across the water.
4 February 2018
Somewhere between drizzle and light rain we have no real sense of water falling from the sky; more descending or gently settling insidiously attaching itself to things and dogs. Falling water only begins once it has accumulated on twigs and branches; forming droplets that stretch the surface tension beyond the point that can be held back from gravity and in the wood the water drips.
5 February 2018
Ice man wandered out last night dragging warmth from everywhere; left his friend chill wind lying drunk but active in a gutter; so standing water froze and leaves and grass and earth crisped up. Sunshine crept in at dawn bright and sparkling but a night carousing in the Antipodes left no energy to warm this world and chill wind maintained its rule.
6 February 2018
As if a team of giants had raced through the night sketching out the world an hour of snow has lined every branch and twig each bush and fallen limb. All colours that are not white are dark and monochrome a background to the reality of nature combined with art.
7 February 2018
A wall of bramble branches each leaf balancing a small tower of snow; a mountainside of minature constructions clinging to the edge. A precarious and precipitous slope suspended in the air; one small breath of air, one bird, one passing animal will bring down one tower or more to tumble to another and avalanche them all.
8 February 2018
Tumbling water has a sharper sound when cold has been left in charge; the swirl of freezing liquid round a curve can set your teeth on edge as if the energy had changed and was building to some crescendo. Rare notes of birds, quietened by the chill, retain a more complex resonance, a timbre lost to other seasons.
9 February 2018
A fine gossamer blanket lies across the ground, white as snow but so insubstantial that the very earth shows through. This tenuous mantle hides frozen earth hard and solid beneath its flimsy cover; the apparent softness of the gauze lost to the rigidity beneath.
10 February 2018
Steam rises from moving water cold as ice; giving up its heat to the freezing air; letting it escape and head off for warmer climes. Still waters have frozen and hold what little heat they have left beneath the ice; night’s cold stretches into day squeezing out heat as thin sunshine struggles to replenish it.
11 February 2018
A touch of sun a warmth that yesterday was missing sets all the birds on chatter of the coming Spring. Older ones warn of storm and ice and rain that will have to be weathered first; of nests torn from trees and eggs spilled upon the ground; whilst those looking to their first Spring are simply full of joy and fail to hear or heed their elders.
12 February 2018
Bright sunshine shows me all that I can see; everything is light, sharp edges and clear colours, red brick, yellow lines and hard surfaces; all chilled by a harsh wind that cuts down the alleyways of stone streets.
13 February 2018
Oh England, what made you specialise in skies of grey, cold pale scudding things that hold no interest and from which eyes fall away to linger on almost anything that has some colour? The largest empire the world has seen; half the inventions of the modern world; the greatest writers humankind has known; surely you could have come up with better skies; with lush deep colours; mighty contrasts; even prettiness; but all we get is grey and grey and grey.
14 February 2018
Focus changes and the world that barely changes day by day also changes. Perspective is all and when we see things from a never before seen place perspective changes however slowly. Eyes are different and will be so forever so everything is new and strange.
15 February 2018
Hard earth beneath the soft top layer demarks the undulations of this land that spent ten thousand years in growing ground; whilst birds sing not louder but with more purpose than London’s snarling belching traffic; and the river marks the movement of the world; of water flowing with its gravity and its spin and quietly singing as it goes.
16 February 2018
It is the birds that have the morning; cawing and crowing and chattering in amongst the branches; flapping back and forth to greet old friends they thought might have succumbed to winter; swooping low and gliding high; and dancing on the breeze.
17 February 2018
The seeds and buds are burgeoning with life; slow and barely moving still in the chill cold air and cloying wet earth; but beginning to prepare for the time of change when greater warmth and longer days will signal that the only chance of life and growth and ever bursting into blossom is in the now; and if ignored or missed will be forever lost.
18 February 2018
Puddled mud gathers in yesterday’s paw prints, dog and deer bird and man; the earth is sodden and can absorb no more. Growing puddles create small rivulets that feed upon each other and let the water ooze across the land to anywhere that permits a fall; and down into a stream or river slip those droplets which will journey who knows where.
19 February 2018
Streams and rivers have dropped as the waters have raced downstream; now they converse with beds and rocks and fallen branches; chattering of journeys made and wondering of travels yet to come. All is movement; from rain or field or hill or lake to here only to be transported without time to stand and stare to some monstrous confluence of mighty runs some as yet unknown where far away.
20 February 2018
There is a wind not biting chill shrill or snapping at the heels; a light wind that fails to penetrate the trees but whispers in the open; no whistling or howling; not even sighing or rustling of leaves; perhaps the merest sough a hint of older times when wind mattered more.
21 February 2018
There is a little purple flower that in sheltered spots peeks above the woodland floor. Not love in idleness but this four petalled blossom smaller than a child’s fingernail holds all the wonder and the promise of what is to come as winter fades away and the spring takes space to flourish.
22 February 2018
Last night Winter grabbed the growing things with an icy hand and reasserted some authority. A little warmth and some gentle sunshine may be the harbinger of Spring but Spring is merely coming and Winter is still here. And Winter made it clear whilst life may prepare for growth Winter will stay and rule until Winter is well and done.
23 February 2018
The icy grasp of Winter has tightened like an old man who grips forever unable to release his fingers. But a deep red orange orb is resting on the horizon and whilst it holds no heat now eventually it will thaw the frozen claw.
24 February 2018
Thin pale sun barely manages to crawl above the edge of the world as Winter smiles and smirks all cosy in the crisp long grass. Light is soft and quietly dazzling pulling on the beauty of the world encouraging it to burst and grow but Winter has hold of all the levers and will not let them move.
25 February 2018
Sun shines bright and clear shards of light across the space, each tree shadowed on the ground and breeze moves branches setting up a dance of light and shade. And down below Winter stands in splendour and just holds the frame, holds it still and cold, earth hard and unforgiving. Sun may think that wind is joining it for beauty and a boogie, but Winter knows that wind is merely stealing heat.
26 February 2018
Be it known that I and I alone am Winter daughter of the moon lord of the four quarters and mistress of the wind and waters; wind that steals heat from the most protected corners and waters that spread cold to all. You sun may hang there in the sky this day pallid and pathetic and do naught but watch whilst each and every bud and flower that you have persuaded and encouraged to grow and blossom is made my abject subject born to suffer.
27 February 2018
Unlike almost any other fluids ice grows top down enabling fish and water life to move and swim and feed and breed beneath the hard encasement. Chickens find this none too useful as they peck at what was liquid and stand and look in disconcertion at a change they fail to comprehend. Those pecks some mornings are sufficient to penetrate the freeze and the cockerel clearly thinks he can command the waters and risks his beak with battering. But not today, today requires a boot at speed descending.
28 February 2018
Young dog spots a stick, a veritably sticky stick; a stick that should be grabbed and dragged and run around, perhaps bashed against a tree or leg; then to be abandoned and forgotten in some forlorn and empty space. But this stick is stuck frozen to the ground and whilst it clearly wants to come and play the world will not allow it and for a few more hours stuck this stick will stay.