It snowed yesterday. Just a dusting – but for a while, the sodden landscape was transformed into something peacefully beautiful. To me, snow is one of those arguably ordinary events that is rarely fully appreciated: what other natural occurrence can transform unappealing objects, like rusty old gates, into something worth capturing? When it snows, really snows, the world’s frenetic pace slows and it grows quiet, as if there’s a reverent hush. Watching the snow is a bit hypnotic, too – as it swirls gracefully to the ground, it’s easy to engage in a bit of reverie: snowball fights, patiently rolling big snowballs to make a snowman, dogs cavorting in the snow…cherished snow memories.
May the wonder of snow be with you this holiday season!
Watching the motion of waves has always been meditative for me, soothing and comforting. Is it because I’m a water sign? Perhaps…or perhaps it’s some faint memory of being in utero. Regardless, I could sit and stare at the water all day, thinking deep thoughts and wondering about the life in that environment, a world inhospitable to me but perfectly suited to them. Are there really two worlds, one on land and one in the sea?
Thinking about ocean life means thinking about how humans have impacted the denizens of the waterworld, like the fact that there are estimated to only be around 400 North Atlantic right whales alive now. Having been hunted to the brink of extinction in the beginning of the 20th century, banning the hunting of this species allowed their numbers to very slowly recover…until this last decade, which saw unusually high mortality, attributed primarily to human causes (ship strikes and entanglement in fishing gear).
On this trajectory, one day, there may be no more North Atlantic right whales. And the planet will be poorer for it.
Read more about the plight of the North Atlantic right whales here.
Everyday beauty: in this case, requiring that the viewer be present at the right time – a few hours later, and the leaf’s icy edging melts in the warmth of the sun. As if it had never happened.
The unseasonably frigid weather has presented great opportunities to observe and capture photos of uniquely brumal scenes like this one. The scintillating crystals of ice seem like living creatures, growing, even suggesting movement when out of the viewer’s direct line of sight. Who could tire of such natural and pristine beauty? And what other substance could make mud look this good? 😉
I’d hazard a guess that most farmers don’t spend too much time looking up at the sky and daydreaming – for obvious reasons: you look up and step into a hole or slip and end up covered in mud. Nobody wants that, and injuries aren’t funny when you have buckets to lift, you need to crouch and stoop, and there isn’t a “backup” to do the work for you. When I saw this morning sky, though, I had to stop pulling my cart loaded with feed buckets and rubber bowls – just for a moment – and take it in.
The soft, puffy-looking “dunes” invited pondering what lay beyond them: the ether. There was blue sky up there, and it peeked out from the cloud cover. I couldn’t help but wonder if, when sleep came, I could float up there, passing through the spun-cotton threshold into what’s above. Maybe I’ll find out.
What feelings or imaginings does this sky(ku) evoke in you?
Today is a particularly good day for introspection and quiet pondering. With the change from summer to fall (winter?), the multicolored leaves upon the ground and the bright but strangely soft quality of light this season brings, it encourages those “deep thoughts” and re-examining the “whys”.
I’m working on accepting: it seems that most of my life, I’ve railed against the admonition that I must just accept things with which I (often vehemently) disagreed. Now – arguably with the benefit of age influencing perspective – I do see that it would be prudent to practice acceptance under certain circumstances, like death. Despite my reflexive need to research, analyze, and solve every mystery, sometimes it just isn’t going to happen. I can work on accepting that – but I am still going to try to make sense of the universe in my own way.
May stodgy and non-productive approaches give way to fresh perspectives and renewed inspiration for you, too, in this transitional season.