A moment after this photo was taken, a yellow jacket-like wasp flew by and tried to sting the tail of the dragonfly. Perhaps it even did sting the larger creature, because the dragonfly instantly curled its abdomen inward, and leapt into the air, evading the wasp and landing higher up in the lilac bush. It flew and landed several times before swirling up and away from the meadow entirely…
We’re coming up on the weekend when lots of US folks migrate to “the Shore” or “the Ocean” [with various regional twangs and slangs for these prized locations]. I like finding things at the beach, talking, and laughing with friends at the shoreline…
But you could give me those same people and the woods, or an outdoor cafe, and I’d still be happy. You just have to let me wander off every so often to explore and look back at everything for a while.
Okay, sea turtles. Yeah, you don’t get those hatching in the woods or in the city. Flap flap flappity little turtles making their way to the water…
Well, there are all kinds of signs to wonder about…some less subtle than others: There are signs of renewal, like the blooming iris, the rescued redcurrant bush bearing fruit, or the black swallowtail butterfly I saw depositing eggs on the fennel this afternoon. There are signs of increasing biodiversity in the meadow — yesterday I saw a small metallic blue sweat bee [I think] that I know I haven’t seen here before.
There are signs of social contracts that can’t be described as “unraveling” because they were never really knit together in the first place. I mentioned to a friend recently that the troubling thing about my relationship with those circling copters I used to complain about [and still do, but not so much in blog postings] is that I can afford to consider them inconveniences — even with a long gardening blade in my hand, I’m….uninteresting.
There are signs that cycles of beauty will continue: the garden view shifts from tulips to lilacs to peonies. The fringetrees and viburnums scent the air. The ninebark has once again turned into a giant pink octopus! It’s mad, it’s gay, it’s wonderful, etc..
There are milestones small and great, such as “1st day the kitten eats dry food voluntarily” or “20 years since my last bad breakup” or “15 years with my wife”. I could go back a bit further, and count the years since I watched Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, and sensed my relationship at that time was not going to work… [Did I have the words back then to say “Um, I think we both really focused on Kathleen Turner in Act I more than the plot really required…”? No. And besides, that’s sort of what the role of Cat is all about, isn’t it?]
From signs to symbols then: a carefully-folded flag handed to a grieving widow, a silver cup given to honor how quickly a horse can run in the mud, an expensive block of stone engraved with election promises that need not be kept. Those are little snapshots of, oh wait, I’ve forgotten the term…metonymy?
Posted in Backstory, Gardening, into the woods, Language failure, My brain | Tagged bonsai, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, change, de facto segregation, in hoc signo vinces, Kathleen Turner, life should have subtitles maybe?, one way or another, persistence, signs and wonders | Leave a Comment »
Actually, the music I’m hearing right now is from Trout Fishing in America:
“All roads lead to my house
Even those I’ve never known!
And when I turn out of my driveway
Taking the scenic route home!”
The viburnum blossoms were shimmering along the mountain roadways as we headed back to Elsinore earlier this week. When I looked out into the garden today, yes, ours were blooming too: the fragrant Korean one in the front yard, and the lace-cap hydrangea-like native in the shady area. Near to that was the fringe tree, which has settled in nicely, and below both were mountain phlox. I got a few sage and other ornamentals into the big planter retrieved from the old family homestead, and I’m trying not to think about the heavy metal gravesite gate my grandfather had retrieved from the family plot, set up on a hillside, and then, well, I don’t think we’re going to move it ever again, whether or not any of our folks remain on that mountain. Maybe it will be a mystery for other people’s children and grandchildren to wonder about? Why have an elaborate gate near a giant, useless radar dish? What does the name on the gate mean? Where where they from? How on earth did it get here?