Thursday, 6 February 2014

Edward Thomas- ' Birds' Nests'

I was walking in the bare February countryside at the weekend and remembered this poem from the best of nature poets- Edward Thomas.

Birds' Nests
The summer nests uncovered by autumn wind,
Some torn, others dislodged, all dark,
Everyone sees them: low or high in tree,
Or hedge, or single bush, they hang like a mark.

Since there's no need of eyes to see them with
I cannot help a little shame
That I missed most, even at eye's level, till
The leaves blew off and made the seeing no game.

'Tis a light pang. I like to see the nests
Still in their places, now first known,
At home and by far roads. Boys knew them not,
Whatever jays and squirrels may have done.

And most I like the winter nests deep-hid
That leaves and berries fell into:
Once a dormouse dined there on hazel-nuts,
And grass and goose-grass seeds found soil and grew. 


  1. Isn`t Edward Thomas wonderful? He is one of those poets I feel is walking with me sometimes.

    Thank you for posting this. The birds nests here would be no shelter for a dormouse today. The countryside is saturated and still the rain keeps pouring!

    1. Oh yes, how it rains. I did take a photograph inside the nest but it just looked soggy! Jane xx

  2. Hi Jane,

    I've been enjoying your blog recently, as I came across this post I thought I would let you know of a little project that is happening in April involving a musical collective called pedal folk.

    Pedal folk is a group of musicians who love singing and cycling, we undertake all of our tours powered only by bicycle and this April we are following Edward Thomas' route from In Pursuit of Spring and writing songs and music based upon his prose and poetry. Have a look at our dates at the website and please drop me a line if you would like any more info.

    All the best

    Tim Graham

    1. Hello Tim, thank you for reading my blog. Pedal folk sounds wonderful. I have to admit to not being much of a bike rider but I will definitely look up your link. Jane xx

  3. What a lovely poem. I feel the same way when I see them. Have a beautiful day, Jane. Diane

    1. Hello Diane. Edward Thomas, seems to say what I feel in so many of his poems. Jane xx

  4. You have chosen an evocative poem for one of my favourite months. February is glorious with one foot in winter and the other treading cautiously towards SPRING!


  5. Hello Stephanie, I too love the very earliest signs of Spring and watch so eagerly for the first flowers. Jane xx