April 1 2014 garden 078




Spaces for comings

And goings.


 March 27, 2014 parkway 040


Open or shy,



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Sans le savoir;


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All speak.

With or without words,

With or without breath;


 April 1 2014 garden 013


All invite.

With or without eyes,

The invitation to know



 April 1 2014 garden 031



It is a mystery

How our awareness draws meaning from

Curve and angle, orifice and orb.


 March 23, 2014 parkway and flowers 019


Our mind creates the personalities;

Endless narratives spin and swirl,

Like moving pictures on a silvery screen.


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(Our awareness the light,

Our mind the lens)


 March 23, 2014 parkway and flowers 033



We look to the face to connect,

To relate,

To recognize,

And to know recognition.


 April 1 2014 garden 025



(Perhaps most, hoping, searching

To find recognition…)


 April 1 2014 garden 089





Basis for knowing.


 April 1 2014 garden 017


(Screen or mirror?)


Words and Photos by Woodland Gnome 2014


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National Poetry Writing Month

The First Golden Dandelion Blosssom

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The first golden dandelion blossom of spring sits blooming in an open spot on the Colonial Parkway.  Here it is, in all of its exuberance, as it greeted the sun today.

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Everywhere, feathers lay in the grass like winter flowers. Only one dandelion, but plentiful feathers.                                                        

So often our dandelions are overlooked at best.  But today, in the midst of January, this tiny little blossom brought a smile.  It is a reminder that winter is passing; spring truly is stirring around us.

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My eyes were mostly directed upwards today, searching for birds.  And birds we found!

The first, friend red tailed hawk, happily sat on his branch, looking out across the James River, through our entire visit.

Which is remarkable chiefly because a whole car load of serious “tri-pod toting” photographers pulled in as I was angling into position to get my photos of him.  I was afraid I’d spook him and he’d fly before they got all of their equipment in place.

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But he seemed to recognize us all, and know we meant him no harm. He sat stoically, turning his head this way and that, like an experienced and somewhat bored model, while we all zeroed in on the angles we wanted for our photos.  The patient hawk simply sat on his high perch, watching.

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A Great Blue Heron wades in the marsh beside a muskrat family’s “push up” winter home.

I left the group to their serious photography and took off with my little camera in search of other interesting scenes.  And was not disappointed.

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A black vulture, one of a great family group, keeps watch while others eat.

A beautiful Great Blue Heron stood wading in the shallow marsh near a “push up,” as though hoping the resident muskrat would pop out and visit for awhile.  He waited patiently, and happily allowed me to make all the photos I wished.

A warm golden day here in Williamsburg brought us all together.  Everywhere we went there were photographers in search of that perfect photo, families fishing from the beach, and even runners.

What is it, hiding amongst the rocks on the riverbank?

What is it, hiding amongst the rocks on the riverbank?

The photographers were hunting for eagle photos today.  They had been checking all the nesting sites they know, but hadn’t spotted a great bird until they found our friend hawk.  Heading in the way from which they came, we counted ourselves fortunate to spot quite a few.  A huge, old eagle serenely perched in the very tip top of a decaying pine, surveying the marsh.

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The marsh is home to many eagles, who perch in the tops of dead trees near the water’s edge.

We were crossing a bridge when we spotted him, and with no safe place to pull over, and cars coming up behind, we drove on without a photo to share.  His large white head shone in the sunlight, silhouetted against an impossibly clear blue sky.

But there were others, riding the air currents high above forest and marsh.  And flocks of gulls, families of geese, a group of black vultures.  It was a busy day, a respite for human and bird alike to come out into the winter sunshine before the next bout of cold sweeps into the neighborhood tomorrow night.

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And, we found the first golden dandelion blossom of the new year, face bravely turned into the winter sun, opening to the beauty of it all.

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All Photos by Woodland Gnome 2014

Zoom In

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How often in life do we glance at the big picture, absorb the information we need, and move on?

I know I operate in that mode quite a bit.  It seems there is never enough time in a day for all I want to do, and so much of my life is lived “in a hurry.”  Especially this last week, preparing for our community party today, I’ve been cramming as much as possible into each passing day.December 5 2013 DOG St 054

On the way home from taking photos on Duke of Gloucester St. on Thursday we stopped by a park.  I’d caught a glimpse of white out on the water- a duck- and so we turned around and drove back to take a photo of the duck.  We have seen swans here occasionally, but not recently.  Even the white ducks come and go.  It was worth a look.   One shot led to another:  the fog rising off the water, the Canadian Geese, the beautiful trees.

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Canadian Geese on College Creek

I was headed back to the car.  But my partner kept gesturing for me to look again.  I turned and scanned the far bank, not seeing anything in particular beyond the trees.  “There’s a heron.  Look again.”

I scanned the bank and couldn’t see it.  But I zoomed in with the camera, slowed down, and looked slowly and carefully until I spotted it.December 5 2013 DOG St 064  The beautiful heron was standing on a log over the water, secure in his safety as he blended in to the background forest.

I think we have to let our attention “zoom in” on a regular basis.  We have to meditate on the details, and look for those things we might otherwise overlook.  December 5 2013 DOG St 066

Especially in relationships; I think we owe it to our loved ones to zoom in to listen, to observe, to empathize.  To not just scan the big picture day after day.  What amazing things we see when we pause to really look.

All Photos by Woodland Gnome 2013

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Great Blue Heron on College Creek in Williamsburg, VA

Our Forest Garden- The Journey Continues

Please visit and follow Our Forest Garden- The Journey Continues to see all new posts since January 8, 2021.

A new site allows me to continue posting new content since after more than 1700 posts there is no more room on this site.  -WG

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