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.

Our cool and damp Spring delayed both birds and green growth generating many conversations that began with, “Have you ever known a later Spring than this?!” My last post reflected some of this understandable impatience…… But at last at last (not a typo!) dandelions hoisted their fuzzy lions’ toothiness, brightening the landscape and our moods. Following close on in the meadows, billowing waves wild mustard’s yellow and then the buttercups’ radiant gold marvelously paired with the cheery pink of Ragged Robin. By the time the rhododendrons spilled open their extravagant fist-fulls of bloom, people were commenting on the lushness of the flowers this year and how very worth the wait it had been! And then the yearly treasure here at Lightspring Glen of the shade-loving Lady Slippers shyly offering their voluptuous flowers. One last cold and rainy spell and mornings of low-40 temps worried me about finding them. But late one afternoon when watery-sunshine broke through the cloud cover, I went up to the hemlock grove and there they were!

…..and I have it on good Authority that the Day Lilies are laying their plans…..

So the Green World is once more fully a-light –a-blaze, really– with chlorophyll’s miraculous energies from the lowly duckweed on the pond to the tallest of the oaks and maples. How I love Thoreau’s musing recorded in his journal, that “Nature is mythical and mystical always, and spends her whole genius on the least work.” Does She indeed!

Three Springs ago in my Earth Pilgrim post for May I attempted to capture the magic of this season: Every year at this time of leaf-bud and tender new leaves, the overnight greening of fields and lawns, I go around for days stunned by the infinite shades of green, each one luminous in the sun’s strengthening light. It’s an amazingly vast palette that delights my eyes and fills my senses. And though I often try, my best writing efforts prove inadequate to offer a fitting description of this visual feast.  (the full post link can be found here:

And so here you have my 2018 effort to synthesize the glories of these waning days of Spring, Summer just around the corner, bringing more and more (always) for this devoted Earth Pilgrim to savor and share. I’ll let the Jack-in-the-Pulpits have the last word:   DSCN6042

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