Nature’s Presence

This morning, early, I step out on the back deck with a cup of tea and binoculars. Simon greets me with a soft “meow”. I sit down on the planks cross legged and he pads over to me and curls up in my lap and begins to purr. We both look out at the view and listen to the birds, his ears greatly attuned to nuances of sound, move this way and that.

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Ironically, since “shelter in place”, I’ve been spending more time outdoors than usual. It’s been in the upper 60s and lower 70s lately and spring here is gorgeous. There is so much news about COVID-19 that can lead to anxiety for me, but when I go outside onto the deck and listen and watch, I calm down, I heal. I open myself up to the present moment and my worries begin to slough off.

Red-winged blackbirds flash among the cattails, RedwingBlkbirdsinging out. A duck calls from across the pond. Another glides across the water silently.              The hills, further out, show patches of green meadow. Clouds move momentarily across the sun.

We don’t know how COVID-19 will affect us ultimately in our communities, our state, our country, the world. We don’t know how long it will linger. But, we do know this present moment, which is all we have, and lately, it’s nature that reminds me of this, and for that I am so grateful.

 

Mornings at Blackwater by Mary Oliver

“For years, every morning, I drank

from Blackwater Pond.

It was flavored with oak leaves and also, no doubt,

the feet of ducks.

And always it assuaged me

from the dry bowl of the very far past.

What I want to say is

that the past is the past,

and the present is what your life is,

and you are capable

of choosing what that will be,

darling citizen.

So come to the pond,

or the river of your imagination,

or the harbor of your longing,

and put your lips to the world.

And live

your life.”

 

Copyright:                                                                                                                                        Oliver, Mary. (2017). Devotions: The selected poems of Mary Oliver. New York: Penguin Press.

One thought on “Nature’s Presence

  1. Hello Maluma- Nice to think of you outside- I didn’t know you have a pond out there! How lovely. I am deeply ensconced into my backyard garden. Birds are overhead but they are too smart to land with all the cats about. What I do at least every other day is ride my bike around the valley, taking various routes. Spring lambs. And the fresh smell of horse poop. And once a few weeks ago, in broad daylight, a beautiful little skunk scurried alongside the road. It was evident it knew where it was going, very focused. I considered stopping to take its picture. I take pictures of critters for my grandkids.
    But then I remembered not to… Nature is happier now. Everything seems clearer and brighter-the air, the new green shoots and flowers. What’s a little inconvenience? lots of love, Melinda

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