1211. The summer came to life. It burst from gray to fierce blue and gold in the blink of an eye; the air pealed with grasshoppers and lawnmowers… ~Tana French

Grasshopper Green is a comical chap;
he lives on the best of fare.
Bright little trousers, jacket, and cap,
These are his summer wear.
~Excerpt from a poem
by Nancy Dingman Watson

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Gary the Grasshopper sat down in the sun
and sang of the way that his life had begun.
First off as an egg he was laid in the ground
and there he remained with never a sound,
his body unmoving, all pallid and white,
till Spring came around and the weather was right.
He remembers quite clearly the day of his birth
he wriggled and pushed his way up through the earth,
then on reaching the surface he threw off his skin,
he had to do this so his life could begin,
but it wasn’t a problem because underneath
he was wearing another as green as a leaf.
Once born he went looking for something to eat
he really liked salads and seldom ate meat,
and being quite young he thought it was good
to eat just as much as he possibly could.
He grew as he ate, and three times since then
he’s needed to make a new skin once again.
But now he’s full grown and he’s learning to be
an adult grasshopper both handsome and free,
so he sings in the night, and all through the day
till a suitable lady should wander his way,
and when they’re together, and after the rain,
they’ll start the ball rolling all over again.
~Gordon J.L. Ramel

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Do you not know? Have you not heard? Has it not been told you from the beginning? Have you not understood since the earth was founded? He(God) sits enthroned above the circle of the earth, and its people are like grasshoppers. He stretches out the heavens like a canopy, and spreads them out like a tent to live in. ~Isaiah 40:21-22  ✝

**All images via Pinterest; collages by Natalie

1203. She savors each bite: the meringue is perfect crispy brown on top, melts in the mouth; the lemon tart, custardy; the crust breaks away. ~A.M. Homes

A Lemon
Out of lemon flowers
loosed on the moonlight,
love’s lashed and insatiable
essences, sodden with fragrance,
the lemon tree’s yellow emerges,
the lemons move down
from the tree’s planetarium

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Delicate merchandise!
The harbors are big with it-
bazaars for the light
and the barbarous gold.
We open the halves
of a miracle, and
a clotting of acids
brims into the starry
divisions: Creation’s
original juices, irreducible,
changeless, alive:
so the freshness lives
on in a lemon, in the sweet-smelling
house of the rind, the proportions,
arcane and acerb.

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Cutting the lemon the knife
leaves a little cathedral:
alcoves unguessed by the eye
that open acidulous glass
to the light; topazes
riding the droplets, altars,
aromatic facades.

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So, while the hand
holds the cut of the lemon,
half a world on a trencher,
the gold of the universe
wells to your touch:
a cup yellow with miracles,
a breast and a nipple
perfuming the earth;
a flashing made fruitage,
the diminutive fire of a planet.
~Pablo Neruda

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What is it about lemons that go so well with summer? The taste, yet tart, if mixed with sugar or honey is incredibly refreshing on a hot summer’s day, is it not?! It’s almost as if it has a way of taking the bite out of the heat as we eat or drink its “golden, barbarous” juices in pies or cakes or cookies or lemonade or whatever concoction one chooses. My encounter with a lemony delight came at lunch today as the restaurant’s dessert for the day was lemon meringue pie. It hadn’t been out of the oven long and was still warm when the waitress brought it to the table. And oh my gosh, was it to die for, as they say! Even now 3 hours later, the luscious taste and aroma of the yellow “miracle” that is a lemon has faded not.

…come, south wind! Blow on my garden, that its fragrance may spread everywhere. Let my beloved come into his garden and taste its choice fruits. ~Excerpt from Song of Songs 4:16  ✝

**All images via Pinterest; collages by Natalie

1196. Every man has his secret sorrows of which the world knows not… ~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

I want to weep, she thought.
I want to be comforted.
I’m so tired of being strong.
I want to be foolish and 
frightened for once.
Just for a small while,
that’s all….a day…..an hour.
~George R.R. Martin

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My life is but a weaving
Between my God and me.
I cannot choose the colors
He weaveth steadily.
Oft’ times He weaveth sorrow;
And I in foolish pride
Forget He sees the upper
And I the underside.
Not ’til the loom is silent
And the shuttles cease to fly
Will God unroll the canvas
And reveal the reason why.
The dark threads are as needful
In the weaver’s skillful hand
As the threads of gold and silver
In the pattern He has planned
He knows, He loves, He cares;
Nothing this truth can dim.
He gives the very best to those
Who leave the choice to Him.
~Corrie ten Boom

According to mom, I started walking around the age of 9 months, and a week or so after that she had to take me in for a check up with the doctor. During that visit he gave me one of those routine immunizations in my little derriere. When I got home that day, I went to take a few steps and fell landing right on the area of the injection. It hurt so much that mom said it was a few days before I’d try to walk again. The image above is a photo she took that day as I sat contemplating my sorrow. I’ve mentioned in previous posts that it has been my lot in life to deal with lots of physical pain, and from time to time I have to endure periods when it’s more prolonged and intense than usual. Sadly I can make no more sense of pain and suffering now than I did that day in the photo. Though I am a strong person, as of late there have been lots of tears, lots of doubts, lots of questions, and lots of needs for comfort. So tonight, I’m taking Shakespeare’s advice from MACBETH to see if that helps, “Give sorrow words; the grief that does not speak knits up the o-er wrought heart and bids it break.”

My soul is weary with sorrow; strengthen me according to Your word. ~Psalm 199:28  ✝

1130. Who hath a garden, he has joy, however small his plot may be. ~Excerpted lines by Thomas Curtis Clark

My garden is a pleasant place
Of sun glory and leaf grace.
~Excerpted lines from a poem
by Louise Driscoll

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What pure delight a garden bring–
What joy in watching growing things
Upspringing from the sodden mould
Their wealth of beauty to unfold–
‘Tis here my spirit soars and sings!

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To note the flash of painted wings,
And hark the bees’ soft murmurings
In quest of sweets the blossoms hold;
Where all gray days are days of gold,
Strolling its paths bright wanderings,
What pure delight!
~Louella C. Poole

Now the Lord God had planted a garden in the east, in Eden; and there he put the man he had formed. ~Genesis 2:8  ✝

**All the flower “babies” were blooming in my yard today.

1113. Spring comes: the flowers learn their colored shapes. ~Maria Konopnicka

Spring makes its own statement,
so loud and clear that the gardener
seems to be only one of the instruments,
not the composer.
~Geoffrey B. Charlesworth

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In the great gardens, after bright spring rain,
We find sweet innocence come once again,
White periwinkles, little pensionnaires,
With muslin gowns and shy and candid airs,

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That under saint-blue skies, with gold stars sown,
Hide their sweet innocence by spring winds blown,
From zephyr libertines that like Richelieu
And d’Orsay their gold-spangled kisses blew;

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And lilies of the valley whose buds blonde and tight
Seem curls of little schoolchildren that light
The priests’ procession, when on some saint’s day
Along the country paths they make their way;

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Forget-me-nots, whose eyes of childish blue,
God-starred like heaven, speak of love still true;
And all the flowers that we call “dear heart,”
Who say their prayers like children, then depart

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Into dark. Amid the dew’s bright beams
The summer airs, like Weber waltzes, fall
Round the first rose who, flushed with her youth, seems
Like a young Princess dressed for her first ball.

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Who knows what beauty ripens from dark mould
After the sad wind and the winter’s cold? —
But a small wind sighed, colder than the rose
Blooming in desolation, “No one knows.”
~Edith Sitwell

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I will maintain my innocence and never let go of it; my conscience will not reproach me as long as I live. ~Job 27:6  ✝

**Images found on Pinterest

 

1075. Dancing is silent poetry. ~Simonides

To dance is to reach for a word that doesn’t exist,
To sing the heart-song of a thousand generations,
To feel the meaning of a moment in time.
~Beth Jones

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Where Does the Dance Begin, Where Does It End?
Don’t call this world adorable, or useful, that’s not it.
It’s frisky, and a theater for more than fair winds.
The eyelash of lightning is neither good nor evil.
The struck tree burns like a pillar of gold.
But the blue rain sinks, straight to the white
feet of the trees whose mouths open.
Doesn’t the wind, turning in circles, invent the dance?
Haven’t the flowers moved, slowly, across Asia,
then Europe, until at last, now, they shine in your own yard?
Don’t call this world an explanation, or even an education.
When the Sufi poet whirled, was he looking outward,
to the mountains so solidly there in a white-capped ring,
or was he looking to the center of everything:
the seed, the egg, the idea that was also there,
beautiful as a thumb curved and touching the finger,
tenderly, little love-ring, as he whirled,
oh jug of breath, in the garden of dust?
~Mary Oliver

And David was dancing before the LORD with all his might… ~Excerpt from 2 Samuel 6:14 ✝

**Images via Pinterest; collage created by Natalie

1070. Dance is the hidden language of the soul. ~Martha Graham

May I stand amazed in the Presence of God;
May I stand in the midst of celestial fire
until my heart is molten gold…
May I walk everywhere on earth radiant, complete…
~Normandi Ellis

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I am the Lord of the Dance said he!
I danced in the days when the world began.
I live in you, and you live in me.
So dance on, then, wherever you may be
For I am still Lord of the dance, said he,
And I’ll lead you all, wherever you may be!

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I sleep in the kernel and I dance in the rain;
I dance in the wind and through the waving grain.
I dance in the constancy of waves in the sea,
For I am still the Lord of the waves’ mystery.
I dance at the Sabbath when it’s time to rest
For to live is to dance, and the dance goes on and on.

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The moon in her phases, the tides of the sea,
The movement of the earth, and the seasons that will be
Are the rhythm of the dancing and a promise through the years
That the dance goes on through both joy and the tears.
They took My life at Calvary, but I leapt up high,
Because I am the Life that will never, ever die.

**This is not a repeat of last night’s hymn that I quoted in part. It’s a heavily edited and adapted version of another rendition of the Lord of the Dance, and I love the new elements of it because I think they add depth and richness. I hope you enjoy it.

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens: A time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance. ~Ecclesiastes 3:1 and 4   ✝

***Images via Pinterest; collages created by Natalie