Seasonal Shifts


10 January

Acute cold has laminated the lake

with a thick veneer of ice

covered by a carpet of snow.

We stepped off the end of the road

onto the sturdy water

and marched away from shore

in the direction of the eagles’ nest

leaving a clutter of boot tracks, paw prints

and snow angels in our wake.

The day was blue and white, sky and snow.

12 April

The hickory trees perform their spring extravaganza

... a charade of shell pink and pale yellow buds

promise elaborate blossoms

then curl back like colorful silken folds

of a conjuror’s scarf to reveal the magic trick

... bouquets of green leaves.

8 May

In the midst of planting annuals, I find myself ripping out dandelions to prepare the beds. I am already too late to prevent the seeding of the next generation.  Their evolutionary adaptations serve them well.  Leaves, buds and cheery yellow flowers hug the ground, avoiding blades of mowers and spades [although the horses seek them out and use their prehensile lips to lift the greens and blossoms high enough to munch]. When they are ready to propagate, the radial petals reorganize into spheres of seed propellers and the stems shoot up  several inches above ground where they wait for the brush of a breeze ... or a foot, paw or hoof ... to create lift off.  I must admit that their appearance each spring lights a smile in my spirit and furnishes an excuse to plow my fingers into the warming earth.

Dandelions in the rocks   48 x 32

20 January 2010

Five days folded in a cloak of freezing fog

have turned the porch screens opaque white,

blanket stitched leaf edges with crystal thread,

and trimmed the horses with a fringe of frost.

11 June

Woods and fields

are a cacophony of June green

blazoned with a cadence of wildflowers.

Following deer and horse trails

and focusing on the notes of color

I discover that I am not alone.

Hum, buzz, drone and flutter

score the movement of fellow collectors.

7 July

The dragonfly ... a living fossil

... a darning needle clad in metallic armor

and levitated on a quartet of crystal wings

... a fast, efficient flyer and a ferocious hunter

with 360 degree vision and 80 percent of its intellect

devoted to analysis of what it sees

... a sparkling dart shot through 300 million years

to glisten among the grasses at the pond’s edge.

16 October

The earliest sign was a subtle alteration

of the value range in the woods

from summer green monochrome

to the diversity of autumn

Then the color wheel spun wildly

with the waning days

from green red bud and yellow-green walnut

to yellow cottonwood through yellow-orange hickory

and orange locust to red-orange wild cherry

and red sumac to red-violet rough leaf dogwood.

30 December

On a bluff above the lake

grows a nursery of young white oaks.

I found them on an autumn afternoon

when the crooked tangle of their trunks

was highlighted by angled rays of sun.

They reminded me then of siblings

wrestling at their elders’ feet.

This morning I tramped through the drifts

in search of them again,

wishing to see the harmony of their angles

accented by the contrast of blowing snow.

Do the elders wonder

whether these unruly youngsters

will ever stand stately and straight?

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2016 © Chris Wolf Edmonds . All rights reserved

Eagles’ Nest   48 x 32

Frost-edged leaves   48 x 32

O Dandelion pinwheel   32 x 32

Hickory buds   23 x 32

Wildflowers   23 x 32

Autumn color   48 x 32

O   Dragon flies   48 x 32

O   Young white oaks   32 x 32