Tui serenade.

Tui serenade.

‘Keow, Keow’, sings the tui as the sun shines golden  at the end of day. ‘Keow, Keow’, and then a single, pure high note. The tui’s song is full of hope. Maybe she’s singing for a mate, or maybe just for the sheer joy of...
Asserting growth

Asserting growth

Spring growth erupts out of clenched fists. No matter how much we contract, dig our heels in, shut out the fierce interventions of nature, growth is programmed. Despite earthquakes and storms, new leaves find their way through, reaching to the...
Brave kowhai in the storm

Brave kowhai in the storm

Usually I delight in the kowhai flowering. It’s so abundant, and the yellow flowers give their nectar so easily to the tuis that dip in their long beaks. But today the kowhais are lashed by fierce winds, their sunshine colour is tarnished, and the tuis are...
The week-long storm

The week-long storm

The storm continues, tearing down trees, scattering debris everywhere, knocking over bins and tables. I saw a huge limb hanging against a tree yesterday, but when I returned to photograph it, the leafy mess was gone. Only the wound remained. I was tempted to go out to...
Spring Equinox

Spring Equinox

Today is Spring Equinox and full moon: an unusual conjunction, which brings our Southern Hemisphere Easter and Spring Equinox together on the same day. Last night I gathered my group for a ritual of balance, to find grounding and stillness in this wild spring We...
Bluebells

Bluebells

My friend Jennie brought a me a bunch of bluebells, knowing how I love them. My father grew bluebells in a shady patch down the bottom of his garden, where they spread freely under the oak tree. When he died, I dug up some bulbs and planted them in my own garden. Some...
Spring storm

Spring storm

‘There’s a storm on its way, as big as Australia!’ said my neighbour as I hurried down the driveway yesterday, just beating the rain. Sure enough, it struck just at dusk, lifting the table from my balcony and hurling it to the other end in two parts,...
Another street garden

Another street garden

After a hard morning’s work, I needed to step outside and refresh my energy. I walked down the street a little way and discovered a street garden: a planter box with a young magnolia growing from the centre. Inside the box, well-fertilised daffodils,...
Skeleton amid the green

Skeleton amid the green

After heaping up a pile of onion weed that I’d pulled out of the bach garden, I discovered a leaf: a perfect skeleton. I knew at once it had come from the mahoe tree, for its leaves have this habit of decaying to leave behind their lacy bones.I placed it on top...
For children, after the quakes

For children, after the quakes

Spring is the growing season. How can the energies of spring help those, especially the children, who are traumatised by the Christchurch earthquake and its continued aftershocks?The ground is something we normally associate with stability and safety. But after...
Street beauty

Street beauty

On my walk, I turned down a little no-exit street. The weather was windy and threatening rain; typical spring fickleness, I told myself. But to my surprise, there on the pavement I discovered three little gardens, soft, fresh and pretty. Creamy polyanthus rose in a...
The last flowering cherry

The last flowering cherry

Of a whole street of flowering cherries, this was the last tree to bloom; and the tuis were gorging themselves. I counted nine tuis in this one tree, swooping in, turning somersaults, cavorting drunkly as they sipped what must be like nectar of the gods, if you are a...
Tulips

Tulips

I was greeted by a blast of colour at my friends’ place: cheerful, laughing tulips. In past years I too have grown tulips and have been rewarded by their exuberant spring presence. But this year, after being busy moving house, I didn’t get any bulbs or...