Apples and Foxes



Welcome Autumn


Time of silly hats and colourful scarves, and not necessarily matching gloves!

Time of flames flickering in the hearth as the Rayburn is lit.

Time of turning leaves, ploughed earth and hedge trimming.

Time of sunny days and star filled nights.

Time of foggy mornings and frosted spider webs.

Time of Apples and Foxes.


Yes, the traditional Apple Day! This year I am privileged to be storytelling at two! Tenbury Applefest, and Calke Abbey Apple Day. The days of the year when I eat more apples, and drink more apple juice than I consume the rest of the year! I try the different varieties, fill my nostrils with the gorgeous smell of ripe apples, and generally have a fabulous time!

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As for foxes, I went for a stroll down the lane last night, to see what things had changed, the ripening berries, the still flowering Meadowsweet, when across the stubbly field, there was a fox. Such a beautiful creature, bane of chicken keepers and instinctual delight to the hunter. They are a little like Marmite, you either love them or hate them. This fox, picked its way around the field, looking for whatever he was looking for. There were some rabbits in the field too, both Fox and Rabbit seeming oblivious to the company of each other. Words started to come to mind.


“Black tips on your orange ears, white flash at the end of your tail. Tell me oh Fox of your honest tale. When you were revered and not hunted. One that tells of you as clever, not sly. Of how your wit and cunning was rewarded, not punished”


This got me thinking of the other creatures of this land, so slandered in folklore as the new religion swept across the land. Ravens, hares, owls, dragonflies even, all associated with devilment and witchcraft in European folklore. Yet in other cultures, these creatures are revered, honoured, and respected.  Tell me your tales, ancient ones, of the times when you were truly magical and to catch sight of you was a blessing, not a curse. My ears are listening.