It’s that time of year again - when leaves, blown in freshening winds, swirl and dance; lighting up dark corners with their vivid colours, patterning our streets and hidden paths - before melding into uniformity ...
leaves fall -
In sheltered spots the sun still warms our backs, while thoughts turn to bonfires and evenings by the fireside; chill north easterlies bring the first Redwing and Starling from Scandinavia. Our resident starling jostle to join them forming small flocks which towards the end of the month gather together in huge roosts ...
from chimney pots ...
I have quoted the following passage by Richard Jefferies before but it is so perfect in description that I make no apologies for including it again here.
[…] In the thick foliage of this belt of firs the starlings love to roost. If you should be passing along any road—east, north, west, or south —a mile or two distant, as the sun is sinking and evening approaching, suddenly there will come a rushing sound in the air overhead: it is a flock of starlings flying in their determined manner straight for the distant copse. From every direction these flocks converge upon it: some large, some composed only of a dozen birds, but all with the same intent. Viewed from a spot three or four fields away, the copse in the evening seems to be overhung by a long dark cloud like a bar of mist, while the sky is clear and no dew is yet risen.
The resemblance to a cloud is so perfect that any one—not thinking of such things—may for the time be deceived, and wonder why a cloud should descend and rest over that particular spot. Suddenly, the two ends of the extended black bar contract, and the middle swoops down in the shape of an inverted cone, much resembling a waterspout, and in a few seconds the cloud pours itself into the trees. Another minute and a black streak shoots upwards, spreads like smoke, parts in two, and wheels round back into the firs again. On approaching it this apparent cloud is found to consist of thousands of starlings, the noise of whose calling to each other is indescribable—the country folk call it a “ charm,” [murmuration] meaning a noise made up of innumerable lesser sounds, each interfering with the other.[…]
wave after wave
the sound of pebbles
in the backwash
Wild Life in a Southern County 1879 Richard Jefferies
The header painting - Sky Art in Nobber, County Meath, is by Eoin Mac Lochlainn, and is featured here with permission.
Eoin is an award winning, practicing, Irish visual artist who also writes a stunning blog about his interests, his inspirations, some stories about the art scene in Ireland, and other musings ...