This is written in response to the latest prompt from the Grow Write Guild – the theme is what your garden sounds like. If you click on the link on the bird names you will hear what I hear.
For me the optimum gardening time is early evening when everyone else is busy with dinner, going out whatever. At this time it seems I have the neighbourhood to myself – no lawnmowers, no strimmers, no children playing.
I sit quietly on the bottom step, my favourite place and listen.
The air is dominated by the strident high-pitched whistling song of the blackbird. He warbles in a variety of notes and if you listen very carefully you can hear another blackbird answering him. Such a hard sound to describe but its one I love and could listen to all evening.
Behind it is the softer trill of robins, we are visited by at least two on a daily basis and they have such sweet voices. Gentle and reassuring not as demanding and strident as the blackbird. Between them the air is full of sound. If you close your eyes and relax it is almost deafening.
But now there is another sound, this time a man-made one, the soft but persistent drone of a car travelling along the nearby road on its way up the hills. It is muffled and pushed to the background by the birds – nature winning out over man.
The blackbird and robin are occasionally joined by other birds I can’t recognise possibly thrush, starling, blue and great tit – all visit the garden regularly. The one I do recognise is the dull coo of the wood pigeon accompanied by its clumsy flapping around the large prunus tree I sit under. For me this is a sound I associated with an evening in the garden – soft, repetitive and familiar, almost hypnotic.
Other sounds sometimes pierce the bird song – the slam of a car door, the bark of a dog, the squawk of my near neighbours chicken and sometimes the call of a cuckoo but the birds always win.
This is my favourite soundtrack to the garden, its personal, private and very special.