‘Wild geese …… sever themselves, and madly sweep the sky’ *

 

For a few weeks now, we’ve been watching the geese.  At first just a few, but in the last week or so, huge skeins of them in groups of V formations take over the sky, honking as they fly, at about half past eight in the morning.

Saturday was The Big One.  Two thousand or more birds invaded the sky above. And somehow, though we were looking out for them, we missed them.  These are the birds, far fewer, that flew over yesterday.

I’ve spent time on the net, trying to find out more about where they’re coming from, or going to.  All I know is that while they’re here, they enjoy scavenging in the recently harvested fields, and Mecca, for them is the wetlands of the former quarries at Nosterfield. And I also know that their massed flights mean that summer is over.

We’re migrating too, albeit temporarily.  We’re off to Poland, my father’s country of birth.  If I can I’ll do a daily post while I’m there.

  • William Shakespeare: ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’.

28 thoughts on “‘Wild geese …… sever themselves, and madly sweep the sky’ *”

  1. Migrating birds are fascinating and their marathon journeys are an advert writ large that we all share one planet. Have just finished reading Rose Tremain’s ‘The Road Home’ where the main ‘migrant’ character arrives in London from an East European country (I imagined that he was perhaps Polish). Have a great time in Poland looking forward to seeing your photos.

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  2. Safe journey, and have a wonderful time in Poland. We haven’t seen geese here so they don’t fly East. There were lots of swallows about at the end of August but I missed them when they mass on the telegraph wires prior to their migration. So sorry to have missed this year, safe journey to them too.

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  3. I don’t know what it is about geese but I never get tired of their comings and goings–maybe I envy them a little, just flying away. We are seeing lots of them now, too, heading to warmer areas for winter, and making a noisy time of it. I’ll look forward to hearing about Poland!

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      1. Oh that’s a shame, but I hope you enjoy your visit, though I’m sure there will be a tinge of sadness that he’s not there with you, you will have lots of questions. Looking forward to your posts, but I will have to catch up after my break 😊

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  4. Those skeins and that honking are so evocative. Timeless, I suppose – keeps us in touch with our roots. And talking of roots, have a great time in Poland. I look forward to your Polish posts, Margaret. Hopefully you will visit some of the places that your family knew and perhaps lived in? Some bittersweet emotions perhaps?

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    1. My Polish family is a closed book to me and I know nothing whatever about them. Beyond knowing where my father was born and went to University. That’s it. But the trip will be evocative all the same. Just like those geese!

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      1. I agree with using ‘awesome’ specifically! I hope you get to see some rural areas in Poland in addition to the perhaps more visited urban areas. I am sure the trip will be fascinating. Have a great time.

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  5. I am sorry you missed the main flight of geese but your photos are impressive nevertheless. My elder daughter has a Polish friend and went to stay with her family a few summers ago. She said it was beautiful there. She had a fantastic time, swimming, sailing and horse-riding. She also loved the fruit that could be bought so cheaply in enormous quantities! Enjoy your break and I look forward to reading your posts.

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  6. I haven’t noticed migrating birds here yet, but it’s been dry and a few trees are ‘turning’ earlier than usual. It feels oddly like fall with a chill in the early morning air and warm afternoons. But, no birds migrating en masse southward, yet. Thanks for the reminder to look up, I spend too much of my time early in the school year with my head down focused on school – there is more to life. Thank you. Have a safe trip to Poland, am looking forward to the post.

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  7. Well, the geese never flew over Devon, when I lived in Torquay…. 🙂 I love those photos and I tend to go for them on Flickr too – it’s a sign of passage of time and seasons and reminds me of the futility of all things, human and all beings….
    Wishing you well on your trip – have been away for a few days – this is fascinating and hopefully you find some of the lost traces of your family. This is awesome too – a wonderful evocative word!
    And I love Rose Tremain, I have read all her books and apart from one I would have given no less than 5* to every other one of hers. It’s rather exciting for me to find co-lovers of an author whom nobody around me knows anything about. (Being Swiss of the German part of Switzerland, hence my family is reading in German, married to a French spoken Swiss with no interest in novels but fervent reader of technical/scientific stuff, living in France….)
    Be good, enjoy yourself and if you gain a few pounds WHO CARES?!

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