symmetry and disorder

The sun shone when I walked to the market this morning and again when I walked to the supermarket this afternoon, which gave me the opportunity to take photographs of spring flowers, swelling leaf buds, and even a small tortoiseshell butterfly.

The traditional yellow daffodils with proper trumpets – the ones I think of as King Alfreds – are mostly past their best, but there are all sorts of other varieties in bloom still, including some utterly gorgeous pheasant’s-eye narcissus. The tiny black bugs in the eye of this one make its colours even more like the butterfly in the top photo.
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spring again

white blossom

It’s a grey day and bitterly cold, but tonight is the spring equinox, which is as good an opportunity as any to post some seasonal photos and re-post a seasonal poem.
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A bunch of daffs

Daffodils in a flooded flower bed

Wet St David’s Day
on my windowsill
a jar of sunshine

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unseasonable

There has been much talk of the unseasonable weather here in the UK, with swathes of bright daffodils blazoned across webpages offering a counterpoint to dreary rainscapes and flood destruction.

So my photo is hardly news, although it is at least a Welsh daff – taken yesterday, New Year’s Day, near Chepstow in South Wales.

Daffodil in flower on New Year's Day 2016
I did consider titling this piece: post early for St David’s Day. Whether there will still be daffs in bloom in three months’ time remains to be seen.

translation and otherness

Firstly, some daffodils for St David’s Day:

Daffodils
Secondly, a Welsh castle:
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St David’s day

daffodils
As always on March 1st, I have been thinking about daffodils. And that has driven me to A A Milne’s essay on favourite flowers. As he says:

A house with daffodils in it is a house lit up, whether or no the sun be shining outside. Daffodils in a green bowl–and let it snow if it will.

There is no snow forecast – though when did we ever believe a forecast? Whatever the weather, though, I have a jar of sunshine on my windowsill.

narcissus

This picture was irresistible as it seems clear that each narciso (as they are called in Spanish) is enamoured of its own reflection.

Daffodils in a flooded flower bed

Looking for an apt poetical quotation, I find that Sir Aubrey de Vere described the daffodil as “Love-star of the unbeloved March”.

Well, it’s certainly March, and the weather here is undoubtedly unlovely. (That flower bed is at least two inches deep in water at the moment, and it’s at the top of the garden; I dare not venture down to see if the trees in the orchard are knee deep, but I suspect they must be.)