Summer Evening

Wild West Yorkshire nature diary, Monday 28th June 1999

midges dancing THE AIR IS CLEAR after the shower of rain. The clouds are high, varied in shape and side-lit by the low pink gold sun. Midges dance (sorry I haven't caught the swirling elegance of the dance, my animated midges are break-dancing, please bear with me, my animations can only improve).

Reed Canary-grass There's a soft light over bracken and tall towpath grasses. The canal is glassy smooth. Although the still air is moist it smells fresh after the shower. A wisp of the aniseed scent of Sweet Cicely hangs in the air and there's a mousy smell from Hemlock or the last of the Elder blossoms.

rain shower A Greenfinch wheezes, a Yellowhammer trots out its song. Brown cows and their calves stand peacefully by the hawthorns of the pasture on the opposite bank.

The whole atmosphere remind me of late summer evenings on Speyside, so far north that dusk progresses imperceptably.

We stand at the Figure of Three locks and watch as the sunset intensifies the colour on the cloud edges briefly, like someone stirring the ashes of a fire.

a moon from a few months ago As I write the full moon shines through a veil of cloud, like a light seen through frosted glass.

Richard Bell,
wildlife illustrator

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