Weather. It's a beautiful thing. Lots of people think so.
Mervyn Peake, master of description:
from Gormenghast, p337
And the days move on and the names of the months change and the four seasons bury one another and it is spring again and yet again and the small springs that run over the rough sides of Gormenghast Mountain are big with rain while the days lengthen and summer sprawls across the countryside, sprawls in all the swathes of its green, with its gold and sticky head, with its slunber and the drone of doves and butterflys and its lizards and its sunflowers, over and over again, its cloves, its butterflies, its lizards, its sunflowers, each one an echo-child while the fruit ripens and the grotesque boles of the ancient apple trees are dappled in the low rays of the sun and the air smells of such rotten sweetness as brings a hunger to the breast, and makes of the heart a seabed, and a tear, the fruit of salt and water, ripens, fed by a summer sorrow, ripens and falls... falls gradually along the cheekbones, wanders over the wastelands listlessly, the lovliest emblem of the hearts condition. And the days move on and the names of the months change and the four seasons bury one another and the field-mice draw upon their granaries. The air is murky and the sun is like a raw wound in the grimy flesh of a beggar, and the rags of the clouds are clotted. The sky has been stabbed and has been left to die above the world, filthy, vast, and bloody. And then the great winds come and the sky is blown naked, and a wild bird screams across the glittering land.
The summer was heavy with a kind of soft grey-blue weight in the sky - yet not IN the sky, for it was as though there were no sky, but only air, an impalpable grey-blue substance, drugged with the weight of its own heat and hue. The sun, however brilliantly the earth reflected it from stone or field or water, was never more than a rayless disc this summer - in the thick, hot air - a sick circle, unrefreshing and aloof.
The autumn and winter winds and the lashing storms and the very cold of those seasons, for all their barbarism, were of a spleen that voiced the heart. Their passions were allied to human passions - their cries to human cries.
But it was otherwise with this slow pulp of summer, this drag of heat, with the incurious yellow eye within it, floating monotonously, day after day.
At the river's edge the shallow water stank and mists of insects drifted over the scum, spinning their cry of far forgotten worlds, thinner than needles.
T.S.Eliot, from The Waste Land
The Burial of the Dead
April is the cruellest month, breeding Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing Memory and desire, stirring Dull roots with spring rain. Winter kept us warm, covering Earth in forgetful snow, feeding A little life with dried tubers. Summer surprised us, coming over the Starnbergesee With a shower of rain; we stopped in the colonnade, And went on in sunlight, into the Hofgarten, And drank coffee, and talked for an hour.
It's a bit hard to describe, but if you've read The Laughing Man, by that Victor Hugo guy, you'll know the power of the first chapter title:
Night Not So Black As Man.
Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eaves run;
To bend with apples the mossed cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer has o'er-brimmed their clammy cells.
Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reaped furrow sound asleep,
Drowsed with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers;
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
Steady thy laden head across a brook;
Or by a cider-press, with patient look,
Thou watchest the last oozings, hours by hours.
Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,---
While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day,
And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir, the small gnats mourn
Among the river sallows, borne aloft
Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;
Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
The redbreast whistles from a garden-croft,
And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.
And, if you've got all excited and want to know what it's like outside, here are some places with slightly less interesting, but more immediate, descriptions: