As in the Roman year, so in the English ecclesiastical calendar used till 1752, this was the first month, and of the legal year commenced on the 25th of March. Scotland changed the first month to January in 1599. This month was called Martius by the Romans, from the god Mars, and it received the name “Hlyd Monath,” i.e. “loud” or “stormy month” from the Anglo-Saxons.
March 1: St. David
March 12: St. Gregory
March 17: St. Patrick
March 25: Lady Day
“A peck of March dust is worth a king’s ransom.”
“So many misties in March, so many frosties in May.”
“March’ll search ye; April try ye. May’ll tell whether live or die ye.”
“March hack ham comes in like a lion goes out like a lamb.”
“March borrowed from Averill
Three days and they were ill.
The first it shall be snow and sleet,
The neist is shall be rain and weet,
The last it shall be sie a freeze
Shall gar the birds stick to the trees.”
The stormy march is come at last
With wind, and cloud, and changing skies;
I hear the rushing of the blast
That through the snowy Valley flies.
Ah! Passing few are they speak
Wild stormy month in praise of thee;
Yet though thy winds are loud and bleak
Thou art a welcome month to me.
For thou, tossed northern lands again
The glad and glorious sun dost bring
And thou hast joined the gentle train,
And wear’st the gentle name of spring.
And in they reign of blast and storm
Smiles many a long, bright summer day
When the changed winds are soft and warm
And heaven puts on the blue of May.
What did Spring-time whisper?
O ye rivulets,
Waking from your trance so sad,
Pleased to welcome fisher-lad
With his little nets,
Speed, for summer’s in the air,
Prattle, for the breeze is warm,
Chatter by the otter’s lair
Bubble past the ivied farm;
Wake the primrose on the banks
Bid the violet ope her eyes
Hurry in a flood of thanks
Underneath serener skies!
What a revel’s coming soon
Fairies trooping o’er the leas,
Making magic by the moon,
Crowned with wood anemones!
What a haunted heart the thrush
Nurses in the blackthorn bush,
Full of splendid songs to sing,
Cheery welcomes of the Spring –
Spring is come!
- Norman Gale
How sweet the hedge that hides a cunning nest,
And curtains off a patient bright-eyed thrush,
With five small worlds beneath her mottled breast!
Though life is growing nearer day by day,
Each globe she loves, as yet is mute, and still
Her bosom’s beauty slowly wears away.
At last the thin blue veils are backward furled,
Existence wakes and pipes into a bird
As infant music bursts into the world.
And now the mother-thrush is proud and gay
She has her cottage and her pretty young
To feed and lull when western skies turn to grey.
- A Creed, Noman Gale
I heard a thousand blended notes
While in a grove I sat reclined,
In that sweet mood when pleasant thoughts,
Bring sad thoughts to the mind;
To her fair works did Nature link
The human soul that through me ran
And much it grieved my heart to think
What man has mad of man.
Through primrose tufts in that green bower
The periwinkle trailed it’s wreathes,
And tis my faith that every flower
Enjoys the air it breathes.
The birds around me hopped and played,
Their thoughts I cannot measure, --
But the least motion which they made,
It seemed a thrill of pleasure.
The budding twigs spread out their fan
To catch the breezy air
And I must think, do all I can,
That there was pleasure there.
If this belief from heaven be sent,
If such be Nature’s holy plan
Have I not reason to lament
What man has made of man?
Lines written in early spring, W. Wordsworth