Woodlands

Our Winter trees stand stripped and cold,
Skeleton shapes to sight laid bare;
Silken grey or corduroy brown
Are woodland’s trunks and branches spare.

Buds of yellow, black and green,
Protect their leaves from New Year’s blast;
Waiting for warmth to set them free,
And woodlands come to life at last.

Sunshine glancing through the trees,
Leaves of gold and emerald green;
Carpets of moss, so soft and deep,
In Springtime woodlands I have seen.

Whistles and calls from high and low,
Fluttering birds just out of sight;
A thrush’s clear full-throated song,
Woodland music at break of light.

Bluebells spreading their sea of blue,
Starwort shining below the hedge;
Herb Robert peeping from the wall,
Queen Anne’s Lace foams at woodland’s edge,

Now come Summer’s deep green shadows,
When chicks are flown, and silence falls;
In airless heat no branches stir,
Throughout the woodlands no bird calls.

Sweet nuts grow hard and turn to brown,
Red Squirrels gather Autumn’s boon;
The thrushes strip Rowan’s purple crown,
Woodlands with mast of beech are strewn.

A rain of leaves falls to the ground,
Once more the light breaks through to shine
On floors of yellow, golden, red,
Our woodlands reach their year’s decline.


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