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Archive for the ‘100 Yards’ Category

 

When we refuse to put away the iconic testimonies of childhood, a harsh nostalgia can grow—a reminder and echo of an ancient voice, “When I became a man, I set aside the things of childhood.”

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The cool mornings and slow warm-ups keep the wasps sluggish this time of year. But the late afternoon sun and warm days bring them out to swarm the few fall flowers that remain. Goldenrod, especially, the diner of choice it seems. Like a farmer, collecting the fall crops before the first freeze, so too the winter-loathing wasp gathers nectar—a last sustenance perhaps? While not venturing out in the morning, they redeem the afternoon, busy with the task at hand. What must I learn? What must I attend to?What sluggishness must I throw off, for unlike the wasp, can I not avoid a cold winter of the soul by redeeming the time?

 

 

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Foreshadow: to represent, indicate, or typify beforehand.

Precursor: one that precedes the approach of another.

These leaves shout something, but what? Are they crying, “Fall is coming,” a herald in this lush land, warning the chlorophyll of its imminent demise? Unashamed of showing their true colors over the need to get out the message, they proudly precede the wonder of blazing hills. And so they go mostly unnoticed: no pointing with oohs and ahs, no photo ops with the kids, no cover photo on Facebook. Self-effacing, a precursor to all the rest.

But foreshadowing connotes a darker theme on the other side of beauty: falling and barrenness, a cessation of  rustling. Canopies and shade give way to the realities of disease and the evidence of forgotten wind and ice and careless pruning. A silent world with all its skeletons on display.

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Grass blades are trees

To weave your web between,

 

And dew drops—the decoration

Like neon lights on the strip.

 

Insignificance unnoticed in the dark

Becomes brilliance highlighted by the dawn.

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Abandoned?

Sadness…

Then the nostalgia of better days—

Hard work.

Smell the hay field,

Do you?

Clean cut and earthy.

A transport back

To a summer before suits

And bills and business—

A summer of sailing

On the tree swing

Out and over and splash.

A summer of squash

And chickens and chiggers.

And riding on grandpa’s tractor.

Or is it just parked for the night?

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What’s he doing, daddy?

What’s who doing, little bit?

That bee.

Oh, he’s collecting pollen from that corn stalk.

Why does he do that? Doesn’t the plant need it?

The plant does need it and so does the bee.

But how can they both use it? The plant can’t keep the bee off.

No, the plant wants the bee to take its pollen.

I don’t want someone to take my toys.

No, I suppose not. But the bee takes the pollen back to the hive for food for other bees.

That’s nice. But what about the plant?

The plant needs some of the pollen to move from one place to another so it will grow properly.

But if the bee takes it, how will that happen?

As the bee moves around on the plant, some of the pollen moves around too and gets in the right place.

Oh, so since the plant doesn’t have any fingers, the bee does that?

Right.

And so the plant doesn’t care if the bee takes what’s left over.

No, I don’t think the plant cares about leftovers.

But if the plant was stingy and didn’t let the bee come over, it wouldn’t grow, would it?

No, it wouldn’t.

But since it’s not stingy, the bee gets to eat and so do we.

That’s right.

And there’s enough here that we can even have leftovers.

Good thing the plant shared, huh?

Yeah, and I’ll share my corn with you.

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Perched

Not chirping

Blue not blending

With all the green, like usual.

 

Sitting

Not flitting

Focused, not a blur

Darting from shrub to tree.

 

But what are you focused on?

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