Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Autumn's Urban Wildlife

Autumn Song

Know'st thou not at the fall of the leaf
How the heart feels a languid grief
Laid on it for a covering,
And how sleep feels a goodly thing
In Autumn at the fall of the leaf ?

And how the swift beat of the brain
Falters because it is in vain,
In Autumn at the fall of the leaf
Know'st thou not? and how the chief
Of joys seems-not to suffer pain

Know'st thou not at the fall of the leaf
How the soul feels like a dried sheaf
Bound up at length for harvesting,
And how death feels a comely thing
In Autumn at the fall of the leaf?

Dante Gabriel Rosetti

And so Autumn comes calling. The days grow shorter, and a little colder, and as I spend time gazing out of the windows I find that we're being visited by a variety of creatures looking for either food or warmth. It was nice to observe this Jersey Tiger moth (above), at close quarters through my mottled bathroom window without disturbing it.

We've also been recieving visits from this foraging fox. It's so cautious and moves so quickly but is a beautiful specimen. I hope to catch him/her again on a future visit.

Perhaps not so beautiful was this monster (below), lurking in my bath and unable to scale the steep sides to escape. It was huge, and appeared to be missing a leg, but I managed to scoop him up and wrestle him out of the window so he could continue on his way.

I was really surprised, but happy to see this frog during a recent spot of rain. Initially, from a distance I thought it was just another fallen leaf, but then saw it hop, so dashed for the camera.

It appeared to love the wet conditions before darting out of sight under the garden shed.

The leaves are falling, falling as if from far up, 
as if orchards were dying high in space. 
Each leaf falls as it were motioning "no".

And toight the heavy earth is falling
away from all other stars in the loneliness.

We're all falling. This hand here is falling.
And look at the other one. It's in them all.

And yet there is Someone whose hands
infinitely calm, holding up all this falling.

Rainer Marie Rilke