darling buds of May


Here are some young leaves and leaf buds I saw outside the karate school when I took Phoebe to her class Friday afternoon. I did, indeed, deliberately choose to bring my camera and macro lens set up, since I knew I’d have time waiting. I love how vibrant the colors were in the late afternoon light.

My post title, in case you weren’t able to place it, is taken from Shakespeare’s Sonnet 18, likely his most famous sonnet:

Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate:
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And summer’s lease hath all too short a date:

In tracking down the excerpt, I was interested to come across a suggestion that in Shakespeare’s day, May was consider the first month of summer, as it is in the Irish calendar.

Of course, I also found a suggestion that they May of buds mentioned was not the month of May, but the Hawthorn tree:

It probably refers not to the month of May directly but to the May tree (the Common Hawthorn) that flowers in England at that time of year.

I don’t know what sort of buds I found, on some shrubs and small trees and climbing vines. I did find that it was tricky to focus on them, due to the breeze. (It would seem that the rough winds did shake them.)

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3 responses to “darling buds of May

  1. I didn’t know any of that about the month of May. Regardless, I like this month and the colors in your photos are part of the reason why. Everything looks so pretty to me.

  2. Wow, gorgeous photos with fascinating commentary! :) I especially like the penultimate one with the reddish leaves. :)

  3. I love them all, but especially the curlicue one, #4, and the focus, the way it fuzzes out at the bottom. Really great pictures, Alejna.

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