Once again the trees are swaying against a dull sky.
The weather is uncertain,
with short periods of sunshine and longer periods of rain.
Thursday 7th September
Dave has been working in the meadow area,
slowly cutting down the shoulder high plants
and helping the meadow to become a meadow again.
The three apple trees are doing well,
and the one with an injured bough -
due to the weight of the apples it bore -
is now carefully held in place and we hope it will survive.
While he was carefully mowing the area
Dave found two frogs, and moved them to another place.
He also heard the sound of a natterjack
but did not see it.
The natterjack is a British species of toad
with a yellow stripe down its back.
Friday 15th September
This last week has been busy as there was an order
for cards from Buckfast Abbey Book Shop.
This kept both Sister Monica and I well occupied !
The order was for 365 cards.
I did the printing and cutting down
and Sister Monica inserted the envelopes into each card,
and later adding the transparent cellophane covers.
The parcel now awaits collection in our silent hall.
The weather here has been very strange lately.
It rains heavily in the night
and intermittently throughout the day.
The wind has been very strong, too.
A heron has been visiting the lower pond,
seeking nourishment, and flying away
when human beings are detected in the vicinity
We are re-reading
THE MILLERS TALE
and Other Parables by Margaret Silf.
On the back cover of the book these words are found:
Today, no less than in Jesus day
everyday incidents can show us
what the Kingdom of God is like.
In The Millers Tale and Other Parables,
ordinary experience reveals shafts of Gods mystery,
tracing creations story, from original blessing,
through brokenness and restoration,
to a vision of a new and never-ending Kingdom
in which we are called to be co-creators.
In this unforgettable book, we discover Gods meanings
in the words and pictures of our human stories.
Sunday 17th September
The days are drawing in - a rather strange expression -
rather like drawing curtains at nightfall -
and the sun rises later and sets earlier.
After days and nights of torrential rain
and strong wind, when trees swayed
and the wind howled,
we seem to have reached a calmer period of time.
Would that this were equally true of the world at large,
which is ravaged by unexpected attacks of violence,
with storms and hurricanes
reaping a harvest of destruction, desolation and death.
The activity in our garden is not so harrowing.
A young fox is seen now and again
in the early morning, when the birds are being fed.
After supper on most days some food remnants
are put out for creatures which forage in the night.
The grass is now patterned with early falling leaves
from gently wind-tossed trees.
The day looks rather dull.
A solitary lesser black- backed gull
was foraging for food on the lawn this morning.
We first noticed these birds in the June of this year.
The day is misty and cold and the Welsh hills
are not visible.
Our magnolia tree has grown tall and strong.
We went out in the afternoon
to look at the red seed cases.
A ladybird rested on one of them,
enjoying the afternoon sunshine.
While we watched it raised its protective
wing shields flew away.
Friday 22nd September
My calendar tells me that Autumn begins today.
The day began bright and promising
but by early afternoon the weather was overcast
and it began to rain.
Dave was able to cut the grass
while the sun was shining.
Only some of our trees are glowing
with autumnal colours.
The old horsechestnut tree would win the prize.
The autumn flowers are beautiful :
some have golden petals
while others are opening their seed-cases
and allowing the seeds to fall into the
This reminded me of the
The Parable of the Sower.
That same day Jesus went out of the house
and sat beside the sea.
Such great crowds gathered around him
that he got into a boat and sat there,
while the whole crowd stood on the beach.
And he told them many things in parables, saying:
Listen! A sower went out to sow.
And as he sowed, some seeds fell on the path,
and the birds came and ate them up.
Other seeds fell on rocky soil,
and they sprang up quickly
because they had no depth of soil.
But when the sun rose, they were scorched;
and since they had no root they withered away.
Other seeds fell among thorns,
and the thorns grew up and choked them.
Other seed fell on good soil
and brought forth grain,
some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.
Let those with ears listen.
Sunday 24th September
The weather has become warmer
and the colours in the garden are brighter.
Some of the lily-in-the valley close to the House
have orange berries and remind me
of my own small garden patch when I was a child,
and we lived in Worcester Park, Surrey.
Our garden was close to a railway line.
It is surprising how soon one can adapt
to the sound of trains.
Some flowers still remind me of my childhood,
and so do certain poems.
The photograph, taken by Sister Monica,
shows the nibbled edges of the leaves,
possibly eaten by small snails.
The lower photograph
shows the aspects of autumn beauty
in a flower-bed close to the lawn
at the front of the House.
We are very fortunate to have such variety
in our acre of land.