Friday, 29 June 2012

Foxgloves . . .

You will have to forgive the delay in the Pictish post, but I am feeling rather rough from this chest infection, which is proving stubborn and I obviously need different anti-biotics to cure it.  Anyway, hopefully these photos will hit the spot.  I should have taken my camera with me in the morning when we drove up our valley to Brechfa to go to the shop.  The light was much better than when I drove up again yesterday afternoon, and it came on to rain just as I was getting out of the car!  I will try again when the sun is out so you can see better all the purple-pink masses of Foxgloves - acres of them - growing where woodland was cleared a couple of years ago.

Here is Mary Webb's beautiful poem: Foxglove:

The foxglove bells, with lolling tongue,
Will not reveal what peals were rung
In Faery, in Faery,
A thousand ages gone.
All the golden clappers hang
As if but now the changes rang;
Only from the mottled throat
Never any echoes float.
Quite forgotten, in the wood,
Pale, crowded steeples rise;
All the time that they have stood
None has heard their melodies.
Deep, deep in wizardry
All the foxglove belfries stand.
Should they startle over the land,
None would know what bells they be.
Never any wind can ring them,
Nor the great black bees that swing them–
Every crimson bell, down-slanted,
Is so utterly enchanted.

When my children were small I used to read them (the girls anyway!)  Cicily Mary Baker's Flower Fairy books and I can still remember the Foxglove Fairy off by heart:

Foxglove, foxglove, what do you see?
The cool green woodland, the fat velvet bee.
Hey, Mr Bumble
There's honey here for thee.

Foxglove, foxglove, what see you now?
The soft summer moonlight
On bracken, grass and bough,
And all the fairies dancing, as only they know how . . .


  1. how lovely to see them growing wild in drifts like that.

  2. Beautiful photographs! I was looking at the foxgloves yesterday thinking I must get my camera out. They look so gorgeous en masse. I love the poem too.

  3. Take care with the chest infection. I've had a clingy summer cold and it's really taking the stuffing out of me. Sympathy!

  4. Absolutely stunning - thank you!

  5. So many of them. They are beautiful! It must have cheered you up to see them . I love the photo of the waterfall fringed with foxgloves. Thanks for reminding me of the poetry too.

  6. Stunning images and all the more touching, paired with the poems you've chosen and shared!

    Take good care of that chest infection - so easy for such to become (if not already) bronchitis or pneumonia - wish there were something more helpful to be shared....

    I was so pleased to find your visit & comment note awaiting me this morning - thanks ever so! I hope we share a good deal of to and fro visits between our worlds via our blogs. (and I believe u are SO right about the cake, lol).

    Warmest wishes to you from my side of the sea & the fishes to you on your side of the sea, snuggled in Wales!

  7. I didn't know that Mary Webb poem BB, so thank-you for that.
    I love foxgloves - I imagine the seeds of these had maybe laid dormant for some years until the woodland was cleared. I think they are biennials, so seed one year and flower the next.
    So sorry about that stubborn chest infection - what you need is a bit of sunshine.

  8. Thank you all for your kind words and wishes. I had to go to A&E again today, and had all sorts of tests. I have come home with stronger/different anti-biotics and more steroids. My mouth tastes of iron filings from the former . . . Yuk!

    Weaver - that was my thought, that the seeds had lain dormant for many years.

    WSC - I'm waving, but there are a couple of hills in the way!

    Waving to all of you.

  9. I love the foxgloves by the stream :D We seem to have such a lot of them in the woods this year. Maybe all the rain has helped!

    Hope you're feeling

  10. Thank you for the foxgloves they are beautiful especially matched with the poem. Your gooseberries make me green with envy. can't find any round here that look as appetising...
    Take care X