Thursday, September 17, 2015

Forest Vigil

Listening to howls and calls coming from the dark trees, it occurs to me that if a forest can be a cathedral, then our gargoyles must be the barred owls. Watchers of the wild wood, none may escape their vigil.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Autumn's Brink

Every season has a song. Winter's song is minimalism, creaks and groans, and the rush of wind through trees. Winter's end brings the joy of spring peepers, and spring is full when the melodious, ethereal strains of the Wood Thrush echo through the forest. Katydids and cicadas, complex and full, create a wall of sound made perfect for hot summer nights. Yes, every season has a song, but to my ears, little music has the relaxing, soothing effect of simple cricket song on the brink of autumn.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Sylvan Elixir

am addicted to 
the air,
the shade,
the shelter,
the presence
of big, old, wild trees. 

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Wild and Free

The trees of the forest are wild and free, though anchored to the earth forever in the very spot where by chance they landed when they were but a seed. Happy and blindly optimistic, they grow and grow, stretching hands to the sun, trembling and swaying in leafy praise and adoration to the Giver of life.

How much more so should we count ourselves wild and free? How much more so should we lift our hands and praise our Maker?

Oh, for the faith of a tree! The trust of a seed!

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Fresh Rain

It is a good and simple joy to sit on the porch celebrating the falling rain. I want to soak it into all my senses. 

Fresh rain, new blessing,
rolling thunder, and 
a curtain of cold, wet drops
veil the surrounding hills
as night settles into the hollow. 

I want to soak it in. I want to feel the wonder of rain.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Buckeye in My Pocket

Off and on I've been known to carry a buckeye in my pocket. Some would say for luck, but I know it's something more. A buckeye in my pocket connects me to my roots.

One time, when my sister and I were little, we collected several buckeyes from the yard of an old house in Petersburg, Indiana. Showing them to our grandfather, he mentioned that some people say carrying a buckeye in your pocket would bring good luck. Naturally my sister gifted grandpa with one of her treasures. Grandpa carried that buckeye in his pocket for years and years, maybe for the rest of his life for all I know. Some would say for luck, but I know for him it was something more. It was a connection. 

Today a friend shared a picture of her son holding a buckeye and asked for help in identification. That eventually led to me pulling out my favorite tree guidebook and reminding myself all about buckeyes and horsechestnuts (they're practically the same thing, and not to be confused with the edible chestnut). All of this was great fun for a nature nerd like me. But the best part, the most significant part, is that it led to me digging through a drawer, a box, and a bookshelf until I found this buckeye.

This evening I've looked at my buckeye, held it my hand, admired its warm color, its pocket polished smoothness. And then, naturally, almost without thinking, I dropped it in my pocket. Some would say for luck. Maybe they're right.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Morning Meditation

Darting, buzzing hummingbirds, cawing crows, chortling wrens, chirping crickets, chatting chickadees, and exultant bluejays. All that has breath gives praise to the Maker of heaven and earth. Sometimes I strive to join my words to the song. But mostly, like the rocks and the trees, I simply stand listening to the heavenly chorus. The song washes over and through my soul. I scarce can take it all in.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Bedtime Prayers

When I need help slowing my mind for sleep to catch me, one of my favorite things is to step outside and look at the stars. On a clear night,  like tonight, everything is calm. The peace of the night seeps into me if I give it time. Except for the soothing rhythms of cricket song and a nearby owl, all is quiet.

There is nothing like the stillness found in gazing at the starry heavens. It becomes, for me, a sort of wordless prayer, bedtime prayer. 

So you can count all the sheep you want. I like counting stars.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Beauty and Thundersong

Tonight thundersong fills the twilight
with just enough music to comfort
instead of frighten.

Clouds pile up
and dissipate
only to reform again
through ever changing forms.

Many people see things
in clouds, like clowns and rabbits.
I see only beauty
and don't need imagination
to make it something more.

Without comparison or analogy
I see beauty and hear music
in thunder and cloud,
and know I am blessed
simply to see and listen.

Beauty rides on wings of the wind,
and thundersong fills the twilight.