Beau May 26th, 2010
I have been amazed at the season’s changes. Yesterday I saw a trio of swifts! Have you ever seen these fleeting, amazing birds? They are usually seen high in the sky, sleek and fast, tiny wings, twittering as they fly by living almost their entire days aloft, returning to earth only to skim across the water or in the evening to roost for the night in chimneys or hollow trees. Three of them came flying by, just over my head and made several circles throughout the trees chasing each other. They were gone as quickly as they came. I wanted to join them…
Over the past week I’ve heard whipporwill’s, owls and coyotes at night, while during the day even the bullfrogs have begun calling. The deep, stuttering and resonant brruo-o-ommm! bro-o-oummm! bro-o-oummm! of the bullfrogs speaks of mid-summer nights.
We have the heat this week, over 90 in late May, so why not bullfrogs? With the heat came afternoon clouds, and as I worked late one hot afternoon, dripping wet from digging post holes for the chicken coop run, I caught a glimpse of diffracted rays of the sun over the trees. I took a break and ran to the top of the hill for a better view.
I see the sun and clouds shining beautifully in this way and it reaches to the depths of my soul. Why is that? I feel so many things, and among them all… hope.
I watched the sun slowly set, and the perspectives of light changed from above to the sides and around through the clouds and sky. I think how so many people face challenges or difficulty in one way or another. And yet there is so much more to us and beyond us! As the sun showers its rays of light across the sky, it seems that we too can transform our own lives in so many glorious ways. There is always hope, and change.
The past few nights have been magical too- I wish I could share them in pictures. Last night was incredible: There were distant thunderstorms with high dark clouds filled with the glow and flash of scattered lightning to the north and west. The clouds would burst from shaded gray and black to bright flashes of yellows and golds, an incredible show of light, and contrasted with hazy gray clouds and the diffused light of a nearly full moon bright and shining in the southern sky.
If that wasn’t enough, I could look out across the fields of grass below the horizon and see thousands of twinkling fireflies. It was all happening at once and I was there, alone, an audience of one to marvel at the majesty of nature at night.
“If the stars should appear one night in a thousand years, how would men believe and adore; and preserve for many generations the remembrance of the city of God which had been shown! But every night comes out with these envoys of beauty, and light the universe with their admonishing smile.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson
And then the morning. To wake early enough to see the sun’s rays return across the landscape from the east. I walk outside to breathe the fresh, cool air and see the world come alive again. I look up into the trees as the yellow light of the sun colors the bark of their trunks. It brings each tree alive, and I marvel at seeing things in a new way. I wonder how old it is?
How many years have passed for this mighty oak tree, and how many birds have graced its branches? How many leaves have fallen… Ah, too many questions, without answers that do not matter anyway. It is simply reaching for something, perhaps a measure of time and a greater perspective with which to compare our life. The tree itself seems timeless. Certainly the tree grows and ages in time beyond our own measured lives. All that we experience, or see, or become a part of… still the trees may grow, patiently, a witness to generations of people come, and gone.
“I still find each day too short for all the thoughts I want to think, all the walks I want to take, all the books I want to read, and all the friends I want to see. The longer I live the more my mind dwells upon the beauty and the wonder of the world.”