Monthly Archives: May 2010


We’re at the farm… its a morning in late autumn; the air is clear and still.  The sun is low but shining strongly.  Against a dark backdrop of trees in shade we can see all kinds of bugs and particles lit up brightly.   The most thrilling – numerous threads of gossamer drifting past or hanging from fence wires and branches; and bees micturating from on high as they approach the hive loaded with nectar, like airplanes ditching fuel before a risky landing.

Later, we’re driving to town.  I see, scattered on the road under a tree, hundreds of little brown objects.  We find out later that they are empty seed pods, discarded by a birch tree.

“What’s that!?” I say.

Lillian, who hadn’t seen them before they were behind us, said “What?”

“Doesn’t matter, they’re gone already…”

“What were they?” she demanded.

“I don’t know… something that fell out of a tree.”

She thought for a moment.  “Maybe a birds nest.”

“No, there were hundreds of them.”

This tickled her curiousity even more.

“What did they look look like?”

“Well, they were small brown things.”

“But what did they look like?” she persisted.

“They looked like little leaves.”

“Well… maybe they were leaves” she said, being very logical.

Mummy and I laughed.  Lillian was upset.

“I hate it when you laugh at me!”


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Its a silent k…

I’m helping her read today’s book she’s brought home from school.  She stops at the phrase knick-knacks, unsure how to read it.

“Look at that!” I say, trying to make the oddities of English phonetics seem like fun. “Those words are just like knee, which has a “k” but you don’t say it.  Isn’t that strange!”

“Its a silent k.  Like gnawing, which has a silent g.” she says, deadpan.

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