Sunday, November 4, 2007


What began as an innocent pot of Italian flat-leaf parsley for my culinary uses turned into a lesson about life and death in the garden for me and my family and friends. Watering one morning I find three rather beefy looking caterpillars looking up at me. Good grief - there goes the parsley, I thought. Lucky for them I'm smart enough to know they will one day become butterflies, so they received their first gift of Life. Even better, a run down to the fabric store secured netting and twine so that their little nursery will be protected from spiders and preying mantis and wasps and birds.

Day 2 I find the first caterpillar has secured himself to a stick, wrapped a slender thread of silk around himself, and is ready for the inevitable metamorphosis process. I vow to record it all digitally, and spent the rest of summer watching the process of metamorphosis and emergence.

Months later I put two and two together and realize it wasn't just the butterflies who emerged from my front porch this summer but I, too, am undergoing an metamorphosis of my own. We all do of course, but we're not always clued into that fact. This blog is only one small indication of my own changing process. Like that thin rope of silk, I'm seemingly precariously perched waiting for the next indicating twitch within.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

If I Had My Way

If I had my way children and pets would never be abandoned or abused. They would always have full bellies and clean water and lots of love and a warm, safe place to sleep. If I had my way I'd have a huge farm house in the middle of acres and acres of woodlands and rolling hills bordered by a river and I would have tons of animals and kids and lap up the love and beauty every day from my front porch Felder Rocker. If I had my way I would shoot great photos and make a living photographing and writing. If I had my way I would see Bald Eagles daily, and I would never tire of the sight. If I had my way I would never, ever leave my lake and my butterflies and my birds. If I had my way my birdseed container would never be empty, my birdfeeders would never break, and the cats would be happy eating the odd mouse instead of being tempted by my feathered friends. If I had my way my back would be strong and my yard would be filled with flowers and seedpods and grasses and trees and rock paths and driftwoods and all manner of natural beauty. If I had my way every butterfly species would visit my garden and politely and patiently pose for my camera. If I had my way my dear mother and all my bestest pals would live close by and we would visit often and laugh long and enjoy coffee with sunrises and wine with sunsets. If I had my way everyone would have a Golden Tree Hour.

I consider these and other ponderings during daily pre-dawn walks with my dog, Baylee. We walk to the beat of hooting Great Horned Owls and soak up the clear night sky and bright, abundant, twinkling stars. Mars has been huge this autumn. Watching the heavens revolve around the red planet has been a morning meditation. The loons are beginning to arrive for winter, and their haunting cries give me shivers of pleasure. My morning walks are very Zen - extraordinarily transcendent. They grant my soul peace while at the same time strengthening my back and heart. Hopefully, it's firming the rest of me as well. The chilly temperatures keep everyone else indoors warm in their beds so my walks lend a bit of solitude in my otherwise busy day.

Morning walks are a time for reflection, time for prayer, time to ponder and time to wonder what I would actually do, if I had my way.


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