30th April 2022

This is a time when so many of us are holding Ukraine in our hearts and thoughts.  But it is also a time when, for us in the Northern hemisphere, the earth is pouring herself out in a profusion of life and leaves and joy.  For me, this is a balance and a healing.  We need the life and the joy to balance the huge amount of anger, fear and sorrow that are being released at the moment. And for those who are feeling weighed down by this, the natural world can be such a place of healing.  Take a walk out where it is green. Breathe in the beauty of new life, and breathe out the pain.  We are about to enter our summer months as Beltane or May Day is the next day, May 1st.

I love May

I love May.  Everything is here, new-born after winter’s absence, fresh-green and glowing.  The newly hatched leaves are translucent and are as perfect as a baby’s toes, eliciting the same surge of awe.  The trees swell to their full size and you can just catch them in their playdays, unfurling fingers, learning the lure of the sun before they settle into the majesty of their maturity.  The world is green again, and for a moment it is surprise, it is joy, it is balm, before we acclimatise ourselves and it becomes backdrop to our everyday occupations.  I love the green, I drink it in deep breaths to water my parched heart.

And not just green.  The hedgerows are bright with white, hawthorn flowers above, cow parsley below, not the cultured pink of cherry blossom but mile upon mile of the bounty of the wild.  They shine as you drive past, they declare the winter dead and gone and celebrate the opening of the earth.

In May the sun can warm you mellow, playing remembered tunes on white skins.  It calls you outside, out of the dark domain of buildings and into the open air, newly refurbished and ready for custom.  And the air, the air is sweet, perfumed by the abundance of flowers so you don’t even need to hold one close to smell it.  The scents mingle with the sun to bathe you inside and outside with splendour.  At my house there is a waterfall of wisteria blossom over my porch door, and a cascade of white clematis over the back so whenever I enter or leave I am filled with the scent of May.