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Click on photos for high-resolution version. Butterfly in the bluets.

There is life at the abbey, but a never-ending winter and a calendar clogged with a heavy burden of anti-fracking political activities has kept everyone down. As for winter, blame a persistent disturbance in the jet stream, which sent arctic air too far south and warm air too far north. Greenland was melting while it was snowing in the southern U.S. The pattern seems to be breaking. There is still time, I think, for April (as the poet Edna St. Vincent Millay said) to come babbling down the hill like an idiot, strewing flowers. Shake a leg, April.

A week ago, this is what we had.

Peach blossoms in the orchard

Blossoms on a wild pear tree, illegitimate offspring of the neighboring Bradford pears

The Bradford pears that spread into the wild, thanks to the birds

A new gate to keep the chickens in the orchard and out of the garden

The last of the daffodils

Bloom on a deciduous magnolia, newly planted

Young leaves on a red maple

Helen, restless with spring fever

One of the three new spring chickens, still in protective custody. More photos to come. This generation will be named for 1950s starlets.

Pine trees bloom too.

Ken Ilgunas is back and will be here at least for the next few months. He has, I think, been soaking up solitude here at the cloistered abbey, resting up from throwing himself at the world-out-there in his last adventure. He promises to post to his blog soon. We have some spring projects planned, of course. And Ken will have a busy time soon around the release of his book on May 14.


  1. Quetal wrote:

    Wonderful to have you back. Why protective custody for the Spring chickens…did you have another hawk attack?

    Sunday, April 7, 2013 at 8:58 pm | Permalink
  2. admin wrote:

    Hi Henry. No more hawk attacks, but they remain in protective custody to protect them from predators. We did let them spend some time outside yesterday, though.

    Monday, April 8, 2013 at 7:23 am | Permalink

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