Friday, September 18, 2009
Listening To The Grass Grow.....
It's been raining, raining, raining. Then raining some more. And cloudy, gray, and still. It's steady, not like a hurricane, for which we are grateful. We like it, because we need it, but we don't quite know what to do with ourselves. Not like in Ireland, where my poor sister despairs of ever seeing the sun again. Wettest summer in recorded history, she moaned to me last week. But life goes on. If they were to be discombobbled by a little rain [or a lot] the entire country would cease to function. Here, it's different. It feels as if we're in a state of suspended animation, as though the earth is holding its breath and standing on its tippy toes.
I went out, one recent morning, into the gray and breathless stillness. The air was warm and sultry, plump with moisture, and it wasn't raining. Yet. Even the birds were silent. But wait! What was that faint, indescribable sound? Not raindrops. They would sink soundlessly into the pine needles. It was the sound of life, I do believe. Green, pulsating life, energized by the generous soaking, pushing itself up through the dirt, reaching for the light. Since The Bean is back in college and we only see him on weekends, I'm in charge of keeping his "babies" alive! On any normal [dry and sunny] day, I can be seen staggering around the garden, a sloshing, heavy watering can in each quivering hand. I've been happy to let Mother Nature take over!
There have been enormous black butterflies about lately, so, ever the optimist,I had my camera along. But, unconcerned with my agenda, they refused to co-operate, fluttering away, staying, always, just out of reach.
I wandered around, plucked a weed here, a weed there. No shortage of weeds, rain or drought!
And then I came to this yellow clump.
Weeds for sure, but very pretty. Besides that growing sound, I could now hear the faint whirring of hundreds of insect wings. It didn't seem so quiet and still anymore! An airborne army of these beautiful black, white, red and blue winged creatures was industriously collecting whatever it is black, white, red and blue winged creatures collect from wild flowers.
They were also very partial to these scraggly daisies.
As was this unassuming fellow:
He was not so glamorous as they in his understated brown suit, but he was a much more co-operative subject. He sat quietly sipping from the flowers through his little sippy straw, while those dashing black fellows staggered and flitted from flower to flower like frat boys at a beer fest. I'd get the perfect shot lined up and, just as I clicked, they'd buzz off to another flower!
And then my nemesis* came to join the party.
Since he seemed less interested in stinging me than in burying his nose in the flowers, I stepped gingerly in and got a few shots of him.....
Today, at last, the sun is back. I'll be sloshing around with my buckets again soon. It's been a pleasant reprieve. And rainy weather is the best for sewing.... But that's another post entirely.
* Just to be sure I was using the right word, I checked with Merriam-Webster. I was given these two choices:
a.One that inflicts retribution and vengeance;
b.A formidable and usually victorious rival or opponent.
Obviously I nailed it.....