Ode to Early Summer

How odd that we should divide the year into quarters, to name them as if seismic changes occur at the arbitrary boundaries with unremarkable homogeneity in between? This may be more pronounced in the temperate climate, the deciduous woodland that is around me, but I am sure the changes to the year are more subtle than just four seasons, or more than the wet/dry division of a tropical climate. To me summer is the most obvious season that is more than just a unified whole. In my opinion it is ripe for subdivision, at least into early, mid and late summer. Right now it feels like early summer.

Early summer is swifts screaming in the blue sky above. It is the damp, nest tropical smell of the trees and undergrowth, it is white daisies and yellow buttercups, red campion and blue forget-me-nots, it is the solitary call of the male tawny owl singing out at night.

It is a time of firsts, the first of the summer crops to turn the fields a uniform bold yellow, the first bats flitting out into the evening light, the first tickle of hay fever at your nose.

It is a time for the senses, under used from the long dormancy of winter to suddenly delight in the longer days, the scents carried on the warmer breeze and the familiar itch of grass under your feet, your calves, your cheek.

It is a reacquaintance of old friends – the swallows, the wrens, the orange tip butterflies and the blustery banks of wildflowers.

It is the sudden burst of abundance that reminds you what has been missing for so long. The daylight and day length to tempt you out of doors. So what are you waiting for?

Em

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