Category Nature

Summer Fecundity

The not unpleasant smell of rotting fruit alerts the senses when one ventures into my backyard on these early summer days. “Our time is now,” that well-known maxim exhorted by coaches in pre-game locker rooms across the land, is nowhere more true than among the two prolific plum and pluot trees in said yard, which, like some urgent stream after a storm, can’t expel their bounty fast enough. I need a crew available at my immediate beck-and-call to scoop up the falling flesh that relitters my yard every day, no matter the removal effort that left it clear just hours before.

Plop plop plop they rain down, even as I am on hands and knees depositing their bruised brothers and sisters into my bucket, their waystation en route to the compost bin and their ultimate return to earth as dirt for next summer’s bounty.

Sorry, soup kitchen, church members, neighbors and friends with whom I otherwise may have sh...

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The Sunflower in November

Foolhardy? Courageous and dignified? Or a case of simple blind programming, of life seeking more life, more oxygen, more photosynthesis even in the face of decline?

These two lone sunflowers poking up out of the colding November soil just outside the bedroom door look more than a little forlorn to this observant and anthropocentric human who sees clearly the fate that awaits them as the soil grows colder still and the sun toward which these struggling seed pods yearn retreats farther into the southern hemisphere.

Talk about a doomed mission.

And yet.


Everything that is is first given a day—often not even that in the case of the mayfly, with a lifespan ranging from 30 minutes to 24 hours. If we are fortunate, we get a second day and then thousands more after that...

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