August started with a stunning sunny and warm day on the first, which saw the annual Welsh Fifteen moment, when we saw more than 15 butterflies around the Buddleia bushes, for the first time in the year.
It reflects a constancy, for now, of life lived here and captured beautifully in 1995 by my brother Mark’s poem, written at and about Gelli Uchaf. Though the date is very variable – in 2012, it wasn’t until August 28th.
Extract from ‘In Translation’ by Mark Wormald :
‘The butterflies were out around the buddleia; a welsh fifteen,
Geese down the lane were squinting in goosed rage,
at some Cyclops in the brambles, unseen…. ‘
In fact by the end of the day, there were probably well over 50, with masses of Peacocks, a smattering of Red Admirals and Small Tortoiseshells, and then at last dozens of Painted Ladies, in what has been billed as the best year for these immigrant butterflies in over a decade, though these seemed to prefer the Knapweed and Lysimachia clethroides…