Friday, 15 April 2011

Swallows have returned

The swallows are back! The male is busy feathering the nest for his mate. He is darting in and out of the rafters under the alcove. We've been deliberating as to whether this generation of swallows are descendants of Austen swallows. I looked up some information on Wikipedia -
"Migratory species often return to the same breeding area each year, and may select the same nest site if they were previously successful in that location. First-year breeders generally select a nesting site close to where they were born and raised."

Chawton House Library have also recently had their swallows return to the nest. So maybe it is still the case that siblings reside in both homes in Chawton, just like Edward and Jane.

The Return of the Swallows

Each Spring I fear the swallows will not come
and the rafter nest will remain empty
of new life. Flying away last Autumn,
heading southwards to Africa, first he,
then she, winged wildly about my head -
a valediction before facing unknown
skies. Are they tied by invisible thread,
as am I, to this point, this house, this home?

For generations this place has held call
over travellers, swallows and searchers
of calm. Over those seeking out one small
corner, one spot in the world that nurtures.
Each Spring I celebrate when I am wrong -
this is where the swallows, and I, belong.

By Madelaine Smith (our multi talented marketing manager)

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