Hair

A rare occurrence,

Fleeting in its duration,

Fabulous hair day!

Ah, the elusive good hair day!  When it lays just the way you want it to, the sun makes it shine and  a breeze just enhances its beauty.  As the caretaker of a head full of stubbornly curly hair, I live in awe of  good hair days, and I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t just a little jealous of this little blossom.  Isn’t it funny how something as simple as well-behaved hair can turn a mediocre day into a great day?

Autumn’s Skeleton

Decay follows death,

Hidden structures visible,

Momentarily.

Usually when you think of a skeleton, you think of animal matter, not plant.  This little leaf skeleton was a nice surprise during one of my woods walks.  I could just envision the leaf in the autumn, falling from the tree overhead to land on this mossy log.  Our mild winter allowed the leaf to stay in its resting place undisturbed while the thin membrane fell away, leaving just the “skeleton” behind.  I’m sure if I went back there today it would be gone, washed away in by a snow or rain fall.  Yet another reminder of how fleeting this life really is.  Do we really want to spend it chasing money and stressing ourselves into over medicated basketcases? I did not think so.  Breathe, look around, and enjoy…there is beauty all around us!

I See You

Spying on the world,

Flamboyantly insecure,

Earthy Peek-A-Boo.

Once again I was out in the woods with my camera when the bright splash of orange caught my eye.  Such humble little photographic subjects, but that silly little mushroom just made me smile.  I knew that I wanted to include this photo on my blog, but I have been very distracted these past couple of weeks by some issues with my daughter,  and was not able to work on this entry until now.  Having a daughter in middle school is both a wonderful yet frustrating time as they try to figure out so many things.  Their world seems to have expanded by leaps and bounds, and they find themselves trying to figure out who they are and how they fit into this new space.  More responsibilities, more distractions, and more learning about how some people play nice and other people do not.  That is what this photo symbolizes to me…a basically confident young person (only the essentially confident would wear orange!), peeking out of the drab and overwhelming leaf litter of middle school.   With luck, all the ugliness of middle school will eventually be reduced to detritus, and they will grow and stand proudly above it all.

Paper Lantern

Fragile hanging shell,

Extinguished for the season,

Waiting for spring’s light.

Winter is such an interesting time for introspection.  To take stock in what has happened in the past and to look forward to the future.  Often times it seems so difficult to battle the doldrums of winter, to not let the drab and weary weather take over our mood and color our lives grey.  But this time of year can be a welcome time to plant the seeds of change in our lives and give them time to germinate.  I have to admit that I have not always been a big fan of the winter, especially as I’ve come to realize how important sunlight is to my sanity and the safety of the people around me!  However this winter has been a bit of a turning point as I’ve discovered the benefits of spending the time looking inward and thinking about changes I want to make as I move forward into spring.

Eternal Optimist

 Sunny bloom in winter,

Cheerfully confused and cold,

Bright against the odds.

We have had such a mild winter this year, which has been a welcome change of pace from what we normally experience.  This little dandelion bloom was confused by the mild temperatures and decided to open his sunny little face, just in time for  a frost!  Luckily, dandelions are hardy plants and having survived his chilly experience, I’m sure we will meet again this spring as he and his thousands of cousins decorate my lawn.  What if we could all be like this dandelion though?  To be able to not only enjoy the mild life, but more importantly to be dealt the hard frosts and survive them with our inherent beauty intact.

Sentries


Sentries stand watch,

As beauty fades softly away,

Guarding until dawn.

This is a scene from my backyard.  Years ago my mother gave me a gift of a clematis plant, which I planted next to a section of our backyard fence.  Over the course of the years, this plant has grown and taken over that particular section of fence, now stretching out a good twenty feet in length and at least 3 feet wide.  It possesses beautiful yellow lantern-type flowers, that when they fade away in the fall, leave these haunting wisps in their place.  I like to think that this plant is a symbol of the beauty that exists in every stage of our life.  It’s easy to recognize the blooming beauty of youth in spring and summer…but is the beauty of fall and winter, that  of something that is not new and fresh, any less beautiful?

Party in the Wood


Colorful guests mingle,

ignoring the drab locale,

in favor of fun.

Went for a photo walk to one of my favorite forest preserves.  The big difference is that this time I was walking it with my camera, every other time I’ve been there, I’ve been on horseback.  It is truly amazing how a different perspective can make such a huge difference in how one views, well, just about anything.    While I’m excited about taking my camera on some rides, I am so glad that I walked the trails that day.  If I hadn’t I would have missed the party…and one should NEVER miss a party!  Especially such a bright happy party that occurs in the middle of the winter dreariness.

Chilled Berries

Winter avian treat,

Exposed to winter’s harsh breath,

Crystalized beauty.

I was busy doing my morning chores one day this winter and I happened to glance up and see these beautiful berries.  What a common occurrence, we get so busy in our lives with chores, tasks, lists but how often do we suddenly find ourselves seeing something beautiful in the middle of our mundane activities?  I was cold, my feet were wet and I needed to pee…but after seeing this, the urge to run and grab my camera was much more important.  Shouldn’t we make space for beauty in our daily lives?  I think so.

Alone in the cold,

Reminiscing of the past,

Waiting for sunlight.

I saw this while out one Saturday afternoon, killing time while my daughter was at a pottery class.  Every day on my way to work I drive past a nondescript commercial building, who’s only distinguishing feature is that there appears to be a trailhead of sorts out behind it.  Recently, our town’s park department was out there, busily putting up a park district sign and the required garbage can, and Voila!  Another place to walk and explore!  So I did just that, walked, explored and looked.  This flower head just caught my eye, with its dark simplicity against the white snow.  Even now, this photo speaks to me of our tendency to withdraw from the world during winter, enclosed and waiting for the light and warmth to return.