March Winds (Prose)

A poem by John Hartley

These winds blow rayther strong - stronger sometimes nor what feels pleasant. Ther's monny a chap has a race wi' his hat, an' it luks a sheepish sooart ov a trick, an' iverybody can affooard to laff at him just becoss it isn't them. But for all that aw alus think at th' year's niver getten a reight start till after March. It's like as if it comes blusterin' an' rooarin', just o' purpose to put things into reight trim. It fotches daan th' owd watter spaats, an' lets fowk know whear ther's a slate at's shakey. It gives th' trees a bit ov a whisk raand an' wuthers abaat as if it wor detarmined to clear all th' maase nooks aat, an' give us a fair start for th' fine weather. But that isn't all it does; it finds aat if yo've ony owd teeth 'at's rayther tender, (an' if ther's owt i'th' world at 'll wear aat a chap's patience its th' tooith wark. Its bad enuff, but what maks it war to bide is, iverybody can tell yo ha to cure it, an' for all that they wor as fast what to do wi' it when they had it as onybody else.) But what does it matter if it does find aat bits o' waik spots, there's nowt like knowin whear they are, for then yo do stand a chonce o' bein' able to tak care on 'em. But it does summat else beside - it brings a fine day or two - an' th' grass begins to luk a trifle greener, an' here an' thear i' bits o' shady nooks an' corners sometimes yo can find a daisy or two; an' what is ther luks bonnier nor th' first daisy yo find peepin up? It may be a bit ov a pindered lookin thing, but its a daisy; an' aw dooant think at th' grandest yo'll find all th' year 'll please yo hauf as weel as this. Little children clap ther hands when they see it, becoss it tells 'em ther's some fine weather comin' bye an' bye; an' they pluck it to tak hooam wi' em' to show ther mother; an' ther grandfayther smiles when he sees it, for it whispers a bit o' comfort to him, an' tells him to cheer up! for th' time o'th' year's comin' when he'll be able to goa aat o'th' door an' sit o'th green grass, an' hear th' burds sing, an' let th' sun shine on his face, an' he willn't be feeard o' bringin' th' rhumatic back wi' him; an' takkin it altogether it's one o' th' mooast pleasin' things i' th' year is findin' a daisy i' March. It's strange ha folk alter in a few years time. Luk at a child when its abaat five or six years owd - see ha delighted it is wi' a gurt bunch ov innocent lukkin' buttercups an' daisies. Noatice th' same child when he's getten fourteen or fifteen years owd. He couldn't fashion to be seen carryin' a bunch. See him agean when he's a man. He's noa time for daisies then. What's th' reason? Daisies are as bonny nah as iver they wor. Ther is a difference somewhear, but it isn't i'th' daisies.

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