Archive for July, 2014

WILDFLOWER PICKING

July 25, 2014

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Not long ago,

I went with my sister to the cutover land

We drove out an elderly two-lane road

in a leisurely way.

Our focus was to each side of the road.

Our focus was wildflowers.

Mary is rather an expert at this;

she takes after our mother.

Mama took her four children on special outings,

frequently ending up at the cutover land,

Her eagle eye would scan the thinned-out field,

noting the charred bark on the tall pines.

This was an ideal place for Orchids, Wood-lilies,

or whatever seasonal jewel she might spy.

Mary, too, has the eye and the sensitized soul

that told her when

to pull her old Honda onto the precarious shoulder.

We spilled out,

disregarding the honks and hurled imprecations of drivers

in too great a haste to notice the flowers.

Some time later

we reassured a state patrolman…

who presumed these two elderly ladies

must need assistance.

We held up our glorious bouquets

with smiles of pleasure

and he left us in peace.

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And we are at peace.

We allow this place to draw us in…

to transport us quickly back

to the idyllic ramblings of our childhoods.

Our mama’s presence is palpable

when we stand still and listen for the sound of the wind

as it plays in the pine branches over our heads.

We breathe in as sisters

though our approaches differ when it comes to picking.

I dive into beauty

the moment I leave the car,

drawn by color and delicacy of form

without needing to know the names.

Mary crosses to the other side of the road,

her magnificent mind full of species as intricate

as the names she sings out with glee.

I forget them as soon as they enter my ears,

and photograph all I see.

We both know we are united in our sisterhood

and the road is easily crossed

when it’s time to go home.

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At home

I placed my bouquet below the window…

just next to the kitchen sink.

And the light that found its way

to these blooms of the wilderness

found its way to me also.

Together we greeted each day…

each influx of light.

We gazed at each other,

our eyes like stars remembering…

sisterhood in the cutover land.

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LESSON IN SURVIVAL

July 13, 2014

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A path curves through the woods

that surround my house.

Since I moved there in 1992,

I have yielded the right away repeatedly to wildlife:

Birds, mammals, reptiles lay claim to this area

long before I dared to build and settle in the midst.

This fierce Brown Thrasher and his constant mate

presumed to build their nest

over-close to the path I walk each day.

Thrasher Family (Babies) 198 (1024x683) (2)Of course I discovered the tiny smidgeons

of blue and gray fluff

that turned out to be babies.

I puzzled over the blue for a while,

as I raised my camera high

to capture a fuzzy likeness.

Thrasher Family (Here To Protect) 051 (742x1024) (4)I earned a most definite scolding

from an upset mama,

before she lured me away with a gentle cooing

and posed beguilingly for my camera.

As the days rolled by this became a routine of sorts:

My curiosity pulled me back with my upraised camera,

and the parent birds appeared to scold and lure me away.

The babies took on a brownish hue,

but my respect for the privacy of the little family

prevented this wood-be photographer

from getting a clear shot.

Instead I focused on the ever-present parents

and was rewarded.

Thrasher Family (On The Tightwire of Survival) 061 (1024x707) (4)

This little mama lives her life on a tightrope,

 exercising – minute by minute – the will to survive.

My empathy for her –

and for her mate and offspring –

makes it difficult for me to see myself

as the invasive human.

Yet that is what I am.

And the only contribution I can make

to their survival –

after the nest is empty and the birds moved on –

is to decorate a little pot and tell their story…

as I see it:

Thrasher Family Pot 1 Thrasher Family Pot 2 DSC03374 (1024x683) (2) Thrasher Family 9 DSC03377 (1024x683) (2)

and

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LOTUS WOMAN

July 6, 2014

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She sat on my shelf but briefly…

before moving on,

gladly sharing space with creations out of my past.

She graciously gazed into my camera lens…

as I recorded my brief moments

as her student.

When I had floundered

at the beginning of creation,

she calmed my fingers and my mind.

She drew attention

to the curving lines of vase…

of woman sitting.

Beyond surrender I flowed easily…

into the center of what came to me:

Woman meditating on the lotus of her life.

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