Here be dragons…

Not Welsh Dragons, but at least they are dragons. Today is Saint David’s day, the patron Saint of 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 Wales. But the symbol for the day is the daffodil. This is a bit of a confused blog post!

Anyway this dragon fountain is in Hanley Park, Stoke-on-Trent’s. I think the dragons are more like water monsters as they have fishy tails (and this is a fishy tale!)

Trees in winter

Reflections again, this time of trees along the river Trent a few weeks ago. Walking in the rain, trying to avoid the fifty yard long puddles on the paths. Stepping through muddy grass with shoes sinking into the earth. It was wet! Subtle hints of green in the bushes that was knocked back when the temperatures dropped and the snow fell. A whole section of the newly restored river bank washed away and the new housing estate on the flood plain is threatened. Why build on the flood plain anyway? Money!

Tree

Trees are huge, yet delicate. Branches, stems, twigs. So much to see, so hard to draw. Mature trees are suffering damage all the time now. Gales blow down limbs, rain undermines their roots. Fungi and bacteria, so small, can lay a tree low. Sudden Oak Death, Ash die back, so many trees are disappearing from the country. Once it was Dutch Elm disease, now it could be any number of infections and lesions.

We are seeing the effect of the anthropocine, the effect of humans on the natural world. We need to change for the good of nature.

Insomnia

I can’t sleep, so I don’t dream, on the hour every hour, I look at the alarm clock. Tick tock, tick tock. Put the radio on low sometimes. The murmur might send me to sleep, but then it wakes me up if there is serious news or something interesting. Having a cat move in doesn’t help. He wants to go out at odd times. Yowl, miaow, he wakes me up. So another night goes by…

Strawberries and cream

Looking for comfort food, I’ve got strawberries in the fridge but no cream. I’m going to get some tomorrow. I want something fresh and summery to remind me summer is going to arrive, that picnics might happen again. That I can visit the park again with friends one day. That life can be restored.. All that in a bowl of strawberries and cream….

My old cat Jinx

A rescue cat. Another photo from forty years ago. This was our old cat. He was due to be put down because he wasn’t wanted so we took him in. He lived another year and died of old age and kidney problems. I did a painting of this photo on an old wooden cupboard door as I didn’t have the money to afford any canvases while I was on holiday from college. The painting was exhibited and sold to someone at Stoke Garden Festival I think? And I did love him, even though it was for a limited time.

Fuzzy photo

photo across the ages from forty years ago when I first went to college. Why? The sky was dirtier, there was dust and smoke in the air from places like the Michelin Tyre Factory. I don’t know if that’s a chimney in the distance or a crane.

Why keep blurry old photos? They link you to memories of a time long gone, of a changed world. Where there was some interest in pollution and ozone holes, but not enough pressure to improve things.

Maybe I should just delete this, but this was a prompt I wanted to use.