Showing posts from June, 2019


To see a World in a Grain of Sand And a Heaven in a Wild Flower Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand And Eternity in an hour You scan the horizon, your view an expanse of hill, field and sky, then you focus in on a detail, maybe a bird or a tree. Does your perceptual world contract to a shrunken fragment?  No, it stays the same size or maybe even expands.  As your attention homes in, so there is a mental blossoming – what was coarse-grained becomes finescale.  Uniform  Mondrian blocks show their true nature as a filigree of delicate tracery. Like a baby in a pram, whose universe consists of its mother and perhaps some toys, it seems limited, but this is the canvas upon which everything plays out – all the sights, smells and sounds to feed the baby’s developing brain. And this is what I’ve found when I’ve concentrated on a ‘patch' - my mind is focused  - I've gone microcosmic! My first incarnation as a patch watcher was enforced.  A decade long stretch o

The News

the news broke around six o'clock robins heard it first plucked colours from their breasts then sang it to the dark that coloured the tiny parts exposed by dawn's needle etching clouds chinese whispered the light held on to it for a while then passed it on leaking ochre rumours bleeding into flame the hills heard the word lifted the veil but slowly a star burst the horizon flooded a piece of it fireworked the fields crackerjacked through trees fireflied the mist even glow wormed webs the news broke around six o'clock everyone knew by seven

Gleaming lances of shivelight pierce the canopy

Gleaming lances of shivelight pierce the canopy - dawn’s first rays threading their way through the outstretched arms of a lone ash tree. Just before starlight meets the ground it illuminates a patch of morning mist. Solar spotlights pick out an ever changing fragment of the new day with a shimmering band - shot through with essence of firefly... Many thanks to the sun, mist, trees and grass for the morning display they put on!


I set myself the very enjoyable challenge of trying to photograph and, where possible, identify all the species of insects I found along a short stretch of path on my patch – in the space of a couple of hours. There were a lot! Once you get your eye in it’s amazing how much diversity there is – everything you look at seems to be something new. And you can do this almost anywhere – a flower bed in the garden is perfect. These are just the ones I managed to photograph, the actual number of insect species that make this plot their home will be several times this. And these are just the insects, if you broadened it to the spiders, worms, molluscs, plants, higher animals etc, etc - and even the microbes - there will be way, way more. Then think about individuals, not just species – astronomical numbers in this tiny fragment of planet Earth. We hear a lot these days about wildlife numbers being depleted, this is true and very concerning. However numbers are often compared