Blackberries and Butterflies – August’s Blessings to September’s Song

RSCN6236

Addendum, 7th September

The note posted a month ago re. “this blog is under construction” is being belatedly addressed due mostly to the brim-full weeks since my wish to at least post something before the adventure of my Summer got underway this eve of the Leo Solar Eclipse! Placeholders were Mary Oliver’s poem and photo of a recent and beautiful visitor. Mary’s poem remains below. Despite Labor Day’s semi-official end point to the season, sunny and pleasant weather is continuing, for this week at least, though the steadily shortening hours of daylight can no longer be denied…something that always makes me a bit wistful.

It has been a Summer abundant in gorgeous butterflies. And of particular delight was the early appearance of Monarchs starting in mid-July.  Continue reading “Blackberries and Butterflies – August’s Blessings to September’s Song”

Luminescence – Notes for Summer Solstice

DSCN6049The calendar reports that this is the 12th of June. Summer Solstice, the mid-point of the year’s Wheel, is only eight days away.  In today’s bluest of blue skies, the midday Sun is nearing its zenith with the just-about-new Gemini Moon close behind…..tomorrow it will be exact. Bird-life is bustling all about, the Starling fledglings launched earlier this week from their nest in the eaves of my neighbors’ house. Our door yards are now somewhat quieter without their hungry clamoring from sun-up to sun-down for those three weeks and a bit more. And after the longest wait and a bit worried I’d not hear them this year, the days on Richardson Hill once more begin and end with the enchanting songs of the Wood thrush and the Hermit thrush. Continue reading “Luminescence – Notes for Summer Solstice”

Me & Mary, Captured by the Light

DSCN5566
Below the waterfall, April light in Lightspring Glen

We are nine days into April and today’s temps, promised to soar into the low 40’s, are a much yearned for, very long-awaited warm-up and hopeful heralding of Spring’s full arrival. By this date each of the four previous Aprils, I’ve already thrilled to the Spring peepers’ evening chorus here at Lightspring Glen. This year I’m imagining these wee amphibians are only now starting to stir out there behind the still-snowy hemlock woods. On a brighter note…literally…the recently returned and persistently optimistic song sparrows were singing this morning in the 20-degree chill air.  Ah, and as I write this, Simon and Garfunkel are softly reminding me, “April…come she will…” Continue reading “Me & Mary, Captured by the Light”

Persistent Hope: Valentine for Mother Earth, 2018

LoveTsunamiThe day of Hearts and Cupid arrived this year with a wintry flurry of events, some cosmic and some chillingly earth-bound. The Aquarius New Moon / Solar Eclipse occurred the day after Valentine’s Day with Chinese New Year close on its heels welcoming the Year of the Earth Dog. But on 2018’s Day of Love our open hearts were shattered by horrific mayhem in yet another public school…seventeen people, students and faculty, gunned down.  My intention to pen a Valentine for Mother Earth that day felt pointless, futile, even though a small voice gently prompted the timeless mantra that guides me to “be the change you wish to see in the world”. Continue reading “Persistent Hope: Valentine for Mother Earth, 2018”

Emergence…the Renewing Light of 2018

nearing-Solstice-Morningside-labyrinth-434x324
Morningside Labyrinth…the Path leads on…

In just a few days’ time, the re-birthed Light of Winter Solstice will be a month in its growing, each day now lengthening by a little over one minute. The first New Moon of the year will reign in tomorrow’s daytime sky, the Capricorn New Moon. Holiday celebrations are now tucked away in our memories. Now further days of Winter’s necessary cold and dark invite us to be still, to rest, allowing the forces of renewal to have their restorative effect on us and all of Nature. I take heart from the poet Theodore Roethke who reminds us, “Deep in their roots, the flowers keep the light.” Continue reading “Emergence…the Renewing Light of 2018”

Around every circle…another…

3704BBEC-1E06-4C71-87CD-A415C752E9F5
a favorite sitting spot at the top of the hill

 

Our life is an apprenticeship to the truth that around every circle another can be drawn; that there is no end in nature, but every end is a beginning, and under every deep a lower deep opens.   

~Ralph Waldo Emerson~

After a warm and pleasant Fall that lingered long past its usual departure, the trees have at last surrendered just about all their leaves except for the oaks, always the last holdouts. Here and there these stately beings still offer a swath of bronze and mahogany amidst their neighbors gray and brown trunks. The green world had a season of abundance of berries, fruit, and seed. The acorn crop has been heavy, a bonanza for turkeys and squirrels.  It’s been true of the maples as well, winged seeds twirling to the ground in countless numbers at summer’s end. Continue reading “Around every circle…another…”

September at Lightspring Glen

8C22BF4C-86DF-481B-8677-E9BA528D4E7C

 

Earth Pilgrim report:

It is more than a considerable blessing to live on these seven acres tucked into the northwest corner of the Catskill Mountains. With a conscious shift of my focus the too-often thunderous cacophony of the news-of-the-world can be muted to a tolerable rumbling. Here this late Summer’s important news is how magnificent the fruit crop is, especially the apples. Four years ago I was impatiently waiting for the bank closing on my new home. When I paid surreptitious visits to walk the land that was not quite-yet mine, I was thrilled to discover three or four venerable apple trees from the farm’s long ago orchard, trees likely over 50 years old. Their branches that year were heavy with delicious apples. Weather vagaries in the intervening years resulted in far fewer and nearly none at all last fall. This year once more they are laden with heirloom apples whose names I’ve pledged to discover. How marvelous to be present to fully enjoy them. Continue reading “September at Lightspring Glen”

Lush…Mid-Summer’s Abbondanza & Mary Oliver

DSCN5811
July pond…Lightspring Glen

In the dark and drear of January, it’s summer days like this we dream of…..

Chalice Pond is a serene mirror of the woods here at Lightspring Glen, a gentle breeze is adding just the coolness needed for the day’s low-80s, (with the humidity blessedly comfortable so far ) fair-weather cumulus clouds are sailing their impossibly huge white galleons across the sky’s brilliant blue depths.  Given the news of terrible heat in the West of the continent, here in the Northeast we have been enjoying a most clement Summer with the (mostly) moderate complaint of too many rainy days. And in truth there’s been enough rainfall to cause some flooding problems, especially around the Great Lakes. But since we passed the Fourth, warm, beautiful, abundant Summer has arrived in its fullness so that now making sure to bring along the sunblock is at last a necessity. Continue reading “Lush…Mid-Summer’s Abbondanza & Mary Oliver”

Earth and Sky are Dancing – Summer Solstice 2017

DSCN5809
Below Richardson Hill, Willow Brook Watershed, mid-June 2017

And so the year’s Wheel has spun us gently from Winter’s cold and darkness through Spring’s gradually-lengthening days to June, sweet June. The Sun rose in the Solstice skies at 5:24 this morning, though with Richardson Hill to my east it was nearly 7 before its first rays touched the tree tops here at Lightspring Glen and shafts of golden light began to flicker down into the woods. The huge cumulus clouds sailing past are offering their counterpoint to the long, languorous hours of Grandfather Sun’s light on this Summer Solstice day. Tomorrow will be nearly the same as the sun-stands-still in the sky. Our ancestors knew this phenomena well and celebrated its annual return with fires and fine celebration. Continue reading “Earth and Sky are Dancing – Summer Solstice 2017”

April, come she will

DSCN5547When I woke yesterday, the first day of April, it was to light snow falling, the ground, trees, and woods once more arrayed in lacy-white. Here in these Catskill foothills, we’ve only recently emerged from the remnants of the Blizzard-named-Stella of three weeks ago that paralyzed a good deal of the Mid-Atlantic and New England for several days. Already quite Winter-weary, it was hard to keep from being discouraged at this newly-imposed, longer wait for Spring. There was a frustratingly slow dwindling of the several feet of snow. Finally by the end of last week rain reduced the snow drifts lingering around my house to only a few dirty white piles and in the woods the snow blanket showed signs of tattering at last. And then near dark on Thursday I opened the door to let the cat in and was greeted by the unmistakable notes of a robin tentatively offering his Spring song. I gasped with delight and hurried down the steps to hear it more clearly as it called twice more and then a last time. I breathed in the magic of it deeply, the first Robin-song of the year. Continue reading “April, come she will”