Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Jewels in Late Summer Stillness

Swift River Cruiser
(Macromia illinoiensis)

After weeks of exuberant blooming and riotous color, the lilies in our garden have begun to wither and droop, and they remind me of antique linen in their deliciously crumpled textures, stripes and faded hues. There are many bright days still to come, but August has arrived, and we are sliding slowly down the long sunny hill into burnished autumn.

Blooms languish on the the tall green spires in the garden in a way that brings to mind the timeless Japanese aesthetic (or world view) called wabi sabi. The gracefully evanescing lily petals are the essence of impermanence, imperfection, simplicity and poignant late summer grace. Beautiful in their own unique way, they are silent teachers and powerful reminders of the natural way of things, of the the simple inescapable truth that all things come into being, bloom exquisitely in their own good time and then dissolve like fragrant rain back into the cosmic sea from which they arose.

Mornings are becoming a little cooler here in the north, and on our early walks, Spencer and I make our way through a heavy dew: tiny worlds, atomies and whole constellations laid out at our feet like lustrous pearls. As we go along, we often see dragonflies suspended like brightly enameled jewelry in the hedgerows and thickets along our path. The dragons of the summer air rest easy among the greenery, and their wings vibrate slowly in the activity called "wing whirring" as they warm their muscles and make themselves ready for vibrant flight.

Resting in the light and feeling the warmth of the sun on her wings, my female Swift River Cruiser was a flawless jewel in late summer stillness, and her emerald eyes were perfect in every way.

3 comments:

One Woman's Journey said...

I never thought of the beatles as jewels. You have made me see them in another way. I must see if I can capture an image.
Also, antique linen - I like that description.
You have such a wonderful way with words.
So hot in my area. Several more days of 100 degree temperature.

Angie said...

Beautiful!

Sky said...

this image grabbed my attention.