[Image from Carry Akroyd’s linocut illustrating ‘May’ from ‘The Shepherd’s Calendar 2007’ published by Carcanet Publications]

Come Queen of months in company
Wi all thy merry minstrelsy
The restless cuckoo absent long
And twittering swallows chimney song
And hedgerow crickets notes that run
From every bank that fronts the sun
And swathy bees about the grass
That stops wi every bloom they pass
And every minute every hour
Keep teazing weeds that wear a flower
And toil and childhoods humming joys
For there is music in the noise

The first 12 lines from ‘May’ from ‘The Shepherd’s Calendar’.

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