29 May 2007

from Guy and Pauline, part III, Spring: May (Compton Mackenzie)

It was after dawn when Guy woke, for he had fallen asleep very tired after his week on the river; still it was scarcely six when he came down into the orchard, and the birds were singing as Guy thought he had never heard them sing before. The apple-trees were already frilled with a foam of blossom; and on quivering boughs linnets with breasts rose-burnt by the winds of March throbbed our their carol. Chaffinches with flashing prelude of silver wings flourished a burst of song that broke as with too intolerable a triumph: then sought another tree and poured forth the triumphant song again. Thrushes, blackbirds and warblers quired deep-throated melodies against the multitudinous trebles of those undistinguished myriads that with choric paean saluted May; and on sudden diminuendoes could be heard the rustling canzonets of the goldfinches, rising and falling with reedy cadences.

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