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Posts Tagged ‘New Castle Lake’

Poetry Friday round-up  is with Carol at Carol's Corner.

Poetry Friday round-up is with Carol at Carol’s Corner.

Deer in woods near New Castle Lake.

Deer in woods near New Castle Lake.

I’m feeling a little guilty sitting on the porch on the lake in Mississippi surrounded by my loving family and a blanket of warmth (highs already reaching upper 90’s). There is so much happening in the world that feels out of control, out of my reach of consciousness. And yet I look at nature and see the connections.

On my drive here to my parents’ house, I listened to podcasts. On the TED radio hour episode titled Becoming Wise, I heard the word mbuntu. In this story, South African Boyd Varty speaks about how animals already know this concept, that I am because we are.

I think we all need more mbuntu in our lives. We need to turn our focus on each other to be fully who we are.

The kayaker doesn’t look up
to see me watching him,
seeing how his body,
his paddle,
the water are one.
Stroke right, stroke left
sends a ripple from the water
to the trees,
where light dances like fine feathers.

Branches spread from bald cypress
to shade the grass,
hide the tree frog,
nest the swallow.
A bird calls
Here-a-here-a-here.
Cicadas buzz
like maracas at a Spanish festival.
The sun rises
to the sound of Samba.

–Margaret Simon

mbuntu

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Join the Two Writing Teachers blog for March Slice of Life Challenge.

Join the Two Writing Teachers blog for March Slice of Life Challenge.

 

A mallard nest on the island.

A mallard nest on the island.

My mother told me the story of discovering the goose nest.  She had gone out to the island, a small piece of land they had separated from their property years ago to solve the erosion/marsh issue.  She sat down in a lawn chair and was surprised to see a female Canada goose sitting in the brush.  Ah, she must be nesting.

My parents avoided the island but watched daily as the male guarded the space where the female sat on the nest.

Then I came for a visit.  On Saturday morning, I was looking toward the island and noticed both the male and female were walking around… and there were little fuzzy thinks walking around them.  Goslings!  They hatched!

We grabbed the binoculars and squealed with excitement.

I snuck out with my camera and telephoto lens to capture the scene.  The parents led their babies out for their first swim, and I caught it on video.

On Sunday other Canada geese families came by to visit and welcome the new goslings.

Why are we so fascinated by new life?

For weeks now I have been following Cynthia Lord’s daily Facebook posts about her bunny babies.  My daughter’s best friend had a baby last week, and we can’t get enough pictures.  Everywhere there is new life, and it is thrilling.

Mom and I chatted constantly about the baby goslings.  We grieved when we saw there were only four when originally there were five.  Even though this life and death is a part of every day in nature, we still marvel at it all.

Creation is an amazing thing.  We want to feel that newness of birth.  We delight in seeing something so small mimic its parents.  Don’t you look forward to all the firsts?

I was sitting out on the back porch reading.  I hadn’t seen the geese or goslings for some time.  I heard a splash and looked up to see one of the goslings jumping from the bridge into the water.  I called to Mom, “Guess what I just saw!?”

New life tells us that there is a generosity in this world.

There will be another hatching soon.  On the day I was leaving, Mom and I walked out to the island to see the abandoned nest.  I wanted to take a picture of it.  As we were talking, a flutter of wings flew up from the brush and flew into the lake.  A mother mallard.  There we saw her nest of 10 shiny white eggs.

I probably won’t be at the lake when these ducklings hatch, but I can be sure that Mom will call me with a report. New life is God’s way of saying life must go on.  It’s also just. plain. joy.

 

 

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Join the Two Writing Teachers blog for March Slice of Life Challenge.

Join the Two Writing Teachers blog for March Slice of Life Challenge.

White Castle Lake sunset

I came to the lake
weary, ready for rest.
The sun made its final
bow below the horizon
while Mom served bean soup,
warm bread, red wine.

Home finds me
and wraps me in its welcoming embrace.

In the morning, fresh coffee,
mallard couple in the front yard.
“Are they lost?” Dad asks.
Mom recalls they cleared the wooded space
where they must’ve nested last year.

“Pancakes?” Mom asks
with a grin in her voice.
She knows how I love them.

I am a mother of grown daughters,
well in my 50’s and yet,
I am still a daughter,
nurtured and loved.
I am home.

Discover. Play. Build.

Ruth Ayres invites us the celebrate each week. Click over to her site Discover. Play. Build. to read more celebrations.

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Join the Poetry Friday Round up at I think in Poems hosted by Betsy.

Join the Poetry Friday Round up at I think in Poems hosted by Betsy.

My handmade book of poems

My handmade book of poems

One thing I enjoy about a long break is the time to be creative. I learned how to make a book recently and tried it out on Christmas Day using some paper my daughter gave me as a gift, covering mat-board, sewing pages together, and binding with colorful duct tape. Inside, I have glued copies of the poems I have written this winter break.

I challenged myself to write 10 poems over 2 weeks. I’m up to seven and have 3 more days. This challenge makes me look at life as a poet, finding poems everywhere. I wish I could live like this everyday, but most days the stresses of life get in the way.

Between Christmas and New Year’s Day, I spent some time with my family in Mississippi. My sister took some pictures of the lake. I borrowed this one of two white egrets wading and wrote a poem to the image. I cannot seem to write a poem about nature without mentioning the Great Creator. I also grabbed some inspiration from this site, The Heron and Egret Society, that includes Mary Oliver poems about egrets. I borrowed the word scumbled and began, as Mary Oliver did, with the phrase, “Where the”

Photo by Beth Saxena

Photo by Beth Saxena

Egrets

Where the shoreline turns
hiding among the scumbled weeds,
two white egrets
take stealthy steps on stick-like legs.

The wind passes them by.
The canopy of orange maple leaves
ignore this lightning flash of beauty.

I observe them from a safe distance,
not sure if a prayer is waiting,
I release a breath: “Ah, me!”

I can pay attention, say grace,
and praise you,
twin brush strokes of God.

–Margaret Simon

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