'I only went out for a walk and finally concluded to stay out 'til sundown, for going out, I found was really going in.' John Muir

I've seen the top of Everest (from a long way off), smelled the breath of a whale (from way too close) and lived on a boat in Greece (for a few years), but I continue to experience some of my most precious moments right outside my backdoor.

If comments are proving difficult to do, please email me; sleepysparrow@yahoo.co.uk

Saturday, 3 January 2015

Snow Senses

Happy New Year!

In winter I like to give my senses a bit of an airing, I mean really focus on each of them, not just sight. I shut my eyes and sniff and taste and touch.  Being out in the snow is generally not an olfactory experience but if I try hard enough, there's always something to make my nostrils twitch. 

The chacker-chack-chack of fieldfares in wind-bent hawthorn, 
the crunch of footsteps in ice-crusted snow,
the heavy kronk of a tumbling raven,
the pebble-tapping clicks of a stonechat.


Wood smoke from the chimneys of thick-walled miner’s cottages,
sweet, wet hay scattered for foraging sheep and ponies.


The prickle of gorse when I try to pull myself up a steep slope for the best coffee stop view,
the hot plastic cup from my flask warming my hands,
sticky cake crumbs on my lips,
icy wind against my cheeks.


Hot, sweet coffee,
chocolate cake,
a lemon-ice taste in my mouth from a gulp of mountain air.

Black raven in a blue sky, sheep splashed with either red or purple paint, one lamb or two?
Yellow gorse flowers shining on the hillside,
watery-orange sun slipping below the whale-back-mound of Moel Arthur.