Lots of Spring inspired activity, poems and art works at our Under the Canopy project at Hollybush Conservation Centre.

And our word of the week was Psithurism – the sound of the wind through leaves on the trees…

created by Shelley

watch this space as Shelley adds more layers to her work….

and this gorgeous Blossom Tree and poem by Pat…

Spectral Trees – Pat

The platform is empty

Spiders silken webs  crusted with frosty haw

hang in outline,

Misty shelter windows, no doors

I write creating a furry edge and see

Spectral Trees where my finger has been.


A clicking, hissing line

Waiting, frost breaths

No train

The air is calm, heavy ,opaque

Crunching  the  gritty salt along the platform length.


Spectral trees are gazing at me

Their blackness ominous

Lit by  a moon like  pale sun

Shrouded light

Buds  are forming under the caress of longer days


A black bird sings

from the skeleton tree,

and there it is, high on the jointed branch

a shadowy calling note

to  the first day of March.


Silent Sentinels – Yvonne

Silent sentinels

Your limbs outstretched to the sun

Tongueless witnesses to Man’s incessant thirst for power

Attired in rich, green vestments, you successfully persuade Summer to shower you with her life-giving kisses

Autumn seduces you with hesitant fingertips

Discarding your burnished leaves with lazy ecstasy

Before carpetting your feet with copper

Your modesty is lost in bold nakedness as Winter strips you of your final fragments of honour

And your whispers of relief are almost audible

As Spring bustles in to protect you from such indignity

Lavishing each of your limbs with her chosen buds of promise

What We Noticed Whilst Visiting Our Trees – group poem


Background traffic –

Slushing through wet roads –



Bursting buds.

Children giggling near the pond.



“A crack as I pulled the ivy off Hilda!”

“Blackcurrant leaves are said to smell of cat wee.”

“They don’t to me –

I don’t know what cat wee smells like …”


Magnolia – Pat

I see Magnolias on Southern lawns

Crinolines  of sugared spice

A history of slavery that held black lives in a vice.

None of this holds the charm

of Magnolia

Ancient tree survivor from a  prehistoric time,

Soft buds taste of ginger and clove

Petals  gloved, pink cuticles upward to the light

Teas and pickles  gathered to spice  and alleviate,

Fragrance citrus wafts on  a cool  breeze

Oil pressed in jars in  far off East.

This is the charm of  Magnolia trees

A colour called Magnolia not white, nor cream, yet pure

Does not capture the mood or colour of your soothing bloom

I pick you from the ground, holding you close to my ear.

Magnolia un shells her story

Do not be deceived for I am strong; I am the Mother Plant

Back in the day there were ferns and  me,

There was no bee to propagate.

A flying beetle passed and my tepals closed around,

At day’s rise the beetle flew and took my seed to ground.

Much time passed and I was found and placed in courtyards, groves,

Stories of my virtue, courage, stroked with  brush and quill

Given this name; the great one

Pictured in oil, laid  upon silk

I stand, alone in groves

I am Spring’s essence in a tree.


and some lovely nature inspired art works by Gienia


“Thank you so much for these opportunities to take some time out for myself.”

“I’ve really enjoyed this project and it has really had a positive effect on my mental health.”

“I’ve been struggling quite a bit lately and this is a total lifeline xxx”

“I feel part of this supportive group and TCV Hollybush too.”