April 16, 2010

This week in wildlife

I found an old tin kettle in the Nature Garden this morning, another relic from the plot's pre-war past. It was tall and dented, full of earth and with no handle. I set it down under the ivy, where it might be seen by someone exploring, as I do. I did the same with the small headless statue, which turns up, from time to time, in various locations in the garden.

Sometimes the garden feels haunted. Sometimes it feels like a big public art project, in which you never meet any of the other contributors. Kids sneak in at night through the bent railings, and over the fence at the back; they leave litter, and light fires. Sometimes the council's men have been there, clearing old rubble or cutting back the undergrowth; they exposed, and then took away, the old jalopy wheels and driveshaft I wrote about a few months back. Then there's me (and possibly others), uncovering old artefacts and building bowers; and the garden's wildlife leaves its mark, too: there are fox dens and trails, holes in the larch and the Scots pine made by birds, and the frogs and ducks colonise the ponds. Every day I visit it looks different.