I love this more and more precocious light.
Sunrise and sunset stretch like a celestial rubberband – yes, we’re sliding away from darkness! What a joy to wake up to a lightsome sky and today, on this final day of February, we have been blessed with nordic blue, that washed off colour in our eyes that fills your heart, inner spirit with energy and flawless joy. But now I try to harness my patience to reach the Vernal equinox, in the hope that, until then, winter will at last begin to losen its grip upon us…
February remains traditionally our coldest, harshest month of the year.
Although the North Atlantic Drift (the most northerly edge of the Gulf Stream) protects us from the kind of deep freeze our Scandivian neighbours have to endure on the continent, by now you are fully aware we are not spared with snow! Although we sometimes tend to forget we are part of a very natural world, the elements rule our islands. And until we accept this, we’re sometimes forced to a stand still, as the planet reminds us all… Dormant garden, hedgehogs still fast asleep, starlings feasting on rotten kelp, the world feels meagre to its dwellers.
As nordic sun gathers up strength, we nonetheless feel its increasing power again. To put on record this last day, I opted for a lunchtime walk around Stove. Although our roads have now been cleared, motor’s still stranded on thick ice on the driveway (!) Let’s be stoic about it all, walking doesn’t produce any carbon footprints and will be counting on my school bus on Tuesday!
My current Nordic blue world is very pleasing to the eye, however, I miss the shades of green around our land!
We must never forget we live in circles and light rotates with us in harmony.
The following piece reflects this final thought.
It is very much an earthly one which was well received at the 2006 Shetland Book Festival in Lerwick.
interwoven sounds of curlews,
wrens & blackbirds – tap-dancing rain,
snippik drumming beyond midnight;
migrating shalders to Iceland.
boreal-blue, electric white,
sunsets too lazy in sea fog –
redshanks, peewits just won’t shut down;
waders return from Arctic.
often tormented by the wind –
a million feathers on passage
are hiding low in our heather;
wild geese talk russian in their sleep…
Early gales whistle their return.
metallic grey, blunt eerie dark,
sometimes draped to elude our eyes –
yellow, red, green,
gift from the sun…
gangs of starlings gather to glow
better on snow, black against white;
10 days of gale
shortened by night
deafen our souls.
Copyright © Nat Hall
Poet’s Note: “snippik”: a delightful Shetland breeding wader
a.k.a the snipe.