April 2020
Milk maids up in ragged robin meadow. The willow-warbler singing in Great Birch Copse now, chaffinches, blackcaps, chiff-chaffs in the trees’ branches. Falling furthur into this peace - less traffic on the motorway (– three miles away – the sound echoes up the Teign Valley to my office window when the wind blows from the east),  no low-flying aircraft noise, no crystal trails cutting through the clear sky (I live beneath the flight path of Exeter Airport 17 miles away -). Wondering if I want the familiar world back again, as the ‘world’ is slowely seeming to come back to life, inspite of the governments wishes. Am I alarmed by the prospect of this or just a little reassured as well? Like it or lump it, it is a world  I have grown up with and spent my adult life in, with its roar and fracas, its business.
The loud tinkling of the stream over sand and pebbles into a pool below rusted bracken and fresh bramble shoots, skylarks on the hills. Peace – something our forebears knew not very long ago. I’m thinking Lark Rise To Candleford, my grandfather’s memories of quieter roads, quiet skies and  Edward Thomas’ Adlestrop. But then I’m one of the lucky ones – to live somewhere where peace is easily found – woods – country lanes.
Do I want the old life back? - it was only 4 weeks ago that the shutdown started and the restlessness of roads, skies and lives ended (though it seems an age ago)  or do I want the really old world back? – where nature had a chance, where we knew eternality, where we had the security of knowing life of the planet was infinite, that it would go on and on, where we knew such certainty, the certainty our forefathers took for granted. I’m thinking John Clare, my grandmother. 
Faced with the prospect of a world more and more in violent climate crisis and more bereft of willow-warblers, nightingales and cuckoos or on the other hand a more peaceful, biodiverse, never-ending world, I know which, if I had the choice of either, I would choose.   



23rd October 2019
Tonight I found winter tearing at the trees at the top of Kilndown wood. And breathing out cold air. Leaves fell from a sycamore tree onto the sumptuous wood floor.
24th  17degrees
Small copper butterfly on purple knapweed. The Indian summer goes on inspite of the wind yesterday.
25th 14 degrees
Two kingfishers on a stone a few feet from where I sit by the river on Dartmoor. Then one fishes from a stone in mid-stream. I watch it flip and swallow a tiny, wriggling fish.


Currently enjoying early Summer – buttercup meadows are the place to be – yesterday walking through field full of meadow brown butterflies, damselflies and dragonflies (and horse flies!).







































































Contact: Ros Brady