This time is slight, a guest
appearance between rains,
and so we gorge on light
and encores of color,
sounds and smells pillowing air.
Nothing is luxurious as this
blue flung far and wide, new
raiment donned for July.
Even trees lift up, limbs swaying
into washes of summer’s breath.
Birds practice acrobatics
inside blazing ultramarine.
Bear and wolf speak of bounty
from mountain to river valley,
noses caught in wind’s netting.
I cover myself in morning,
a cape that clings to my shoulders
undoing winter’s penchant for night.
Feet break free to slide, tap, patter;
hands seek tenderness of flowers
whose blossoms share glimpses of
nectar and mystique, perfumes of God.
July comes with a roar, laugh, leap,
a traveler emerging from coils
of cold and wet, then uncertain June,
from mosaics of silence, shifting shadow.
It unveils such wonders that even
hidebound hearts pause to soften
in this easy, ripening blush of summer.
Walk with me. Masterly branches spill their autumn flame. Water sweetens air, tenders ear with purity of sound. Rock and stone praise communion with plant, fish, fowl, insect, ancient earth of all life. Spider spins in peaceable labor. Light sublime meets flesh and breath, finds the soul. We can move this way right through time. Bright and unafraid. Full. Whole. Walk with me.
I awakened today to a wondrous surprise! For weeks the meandering, dainty vine elongated and wove itself among the slats on our second story city balcony. I watered it, occasionally directed the petite stem through more slats and checked for tight flower buds. Nothing but more viny growth. It seemed a bit anemic but tenacious. I felt it might be siphoning off energy from the waiting blossoms but I am not a a knowledgeable gardener…so just encouraged it with attention, words of appreciation. But, still, I was disheartened. They’re such gracious blooms. I wanted them to creep along and brighten the railing with their trumpeting beauty.
I recalled morning glories we grew when the 5 children were all six and a half years or under. We had strung a dozen strings at the edge of a wide porch, roof edge to open porch floor edge, and planted many seeds with the kids. And before all that long, the vines climbed and the flowers seemed not far behind. A riot of morning glories! Every time we stepped out on that porch we felt so cheered and the children loved watching them do what vines and flowers did, unwinding and climbing, opening to delicious light, shyly boasting of their own beauty. The children felt proud of their part in it.
And then, this morning I stepped out on the balcony with tea in hand to check potted flowers and plants–behold! A blossom, one tender, radiant blue blossom! I can’t even explain how ridiculously pleased this made me. It might have been due to feeling the twinges of a melancholy that snags me every once in awhile. The weight of the world, the passing of time, a sadness not really given to naming as much as acknowledging as it comes and goes. sadness. Just what I needed–a graceful morning glory. I have admired it off and on the entire day.
You’ll note that photographing wasn’t easy to accomplish. I offer the first one to indicate where I stood while bending over and around. I had to lean over the somewhat rickety balcony to get any shots, be agreeable about a sudden downpour (it felt gentle and good) and I dropped one camera–not the best of my two and not my phone, but still. I’d been talking to my daughter in N. Carolina (where Hurricane Hermine is dumping a ton of water) but ran outside to retrieve it from wet dirt and gravel. Not good to multitask more with two devices already in hand.
But to the point: morning glory, show yourself! If it was a little battered from the rain, I think it will be okay. It still is lovely to me. I suspect there may be more bursting forth.
And a poem aloft on damp winds was caught in the net of my mind–it is below, offered in closing.
Glory This Morning
I am offered this lesson,
a prescient tale, a warning.
Frail beauty breaks forth
from mysterious strength.
From a small blooming hope grows.
A salve for eyes of sorrow
is seeing with clear heart.
It is another brief report
from earth and sky,
a vivid reminder:
patience and joy require
a turning from self,
abandonment of despair,
willingness to love,
An imperturbable demeanor comes from perfect patience. Quiet minds cannot be perplexed or frightened, but go on in fortune and misfortune at their own private pace like a clock during a thunderstorm.—Robert Louis Stevenson