1429. Autumn, meek and lackluster, came…

late with little rain to its credit,
and now the time draws near
for winter’s arrival, leaving me wondering
if it too will be mild and characterless.

Nevertheless…

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To-day I think
Only with scents, – scents dead leaves yield,
And bracken, and wild carrot’s seed,
And the square mustard field;

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Odours that rise
When the spade wounds the root of tree,
Rose, currant, raspberry, or goutweed,
Rhubarb or celery;

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The smoke’s smell, too,
Flowing from where a bonfire burns
The dead, the waste, the dangerous,
And all to sweetness turns.

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It is enough
To smell, to crumble the dark earth,
While the robin sings over again
Sad songs of Autumn mirth.

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~”Digging,” a poem byz
Edward Thomas

And without doubt the lesser is blessed by the greater. ~Hebrews 7:7

**Images via Pixabay

 

1309. O wild West Wind, thou breath of Autumn’s being. ~Percy Bysshe Shelley

So I like best of all autumn,
because its tone is mellower,
its colors are richer,
and it is tinged with a little sorrow.
~Lin Yutang

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If I had to pick a recent, appropriate emblem for deep November, it would be the mellow richness of this rose. Though a wild west wind has blown today, the day I found it, dawn had broken under a heavy fog, and when the mist lifted, this rose and everything else in the garden was left completely soaked. It was as if the heavens had rained down a multitude of tears and tinged the landscape with more than the little autumn sorrow of which Yutang speaks. I for one have to wonder if, with daybreak coming later and later and darkness falling earlier and earlier, a garden knows that the year has almost completed another turn around the sun. If so and because the longing to be, to exist as an expression of the Divine Presence, can be seen in all Creation, that longing is not easily given up.

As this year draws to its end
we give thanks for the gifts it has brought
and how they came inlaid within,
where neither time nor tide
could touch them, and we also thanks
for the days when the veil lifted
and the soul could see delight;
when a quiver caressed the heart
in the sheer exuberance of being here.
-Excerpted and edited lines
by John O’Donohoe

When we take time to look beyond the trials of life, we see God’s blessings and realize that daily we continue to be given endowments of grace from the Host of the universe. From unmistakable “quivers that caress the heart” we know that we are not alone. We know that we belong to God and recognize a longing within us to touch Him. We know that He sits at the heart of life, and from there works at bringing to fruition that which He inlaid in us from the beginning. We know too that He is beside us in every moment and that our sadness is His sadness, our joy His joy, our loss His loss, our victory His victory.

Give praise to the Lord, proclaim His name; make known among the nations what He has done. ~1 Chronicles 16:8  ✝

1246. If we were but conscious of our own utter littleness, we would not dare look with contempt on the smallest atom in the world. ~Charles Lanman

Clouds of insects danced and buzzed in the sunlight,
and the air was full of the piping of the song-birds.
Long glinting dragon-flies shot across the path, or hung
tremulous with gauzy wings and gleaming bodies.
~Edited excerpt from Arthur Conan Doyle

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Did you know that there’s always a party going on in a backyard. Yes, indeed there is, and the guests frolic on their flooring, the ground, and under the “coffered ceiling” of the sky. Some even “boogie down” underground; thus a lawn, not just the grass, is alive. And the world out there is filled with beasties that buzz, tweet, squawk, flutter, scurry, build, dance, burrow, hoot, chase, pounce, and soar among other things. Not only that but the party goes on 24/7. If you don’t believe me, just step outside sometime, take a look around, and listen.

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Depending upon the season and time of day or night, you might hear a chorus of amphibians, insects a buzzin’, and birds a callin’ or a singin’ or a drummin’. And those noisy birds, for example, just might be a gatherin’ nesting materials, or a feedin’ on berries or insects, or a splashin’ around in a birdbath. Whilst the birds are doing their things, the butterflies and bees might be a fluttterin’ about and a sippin’ on the nectars in flowers. If not that, then you might find a “hophopper” a chowin’ down on a tasty leaf or a dragonfly a skimmin’ across a surface of water. Or you might even find something exotic like my friend in the photos above a lookin’ back at you and gettin’ perturbed because you’re too close to its perch, so close in fact that it raises an arm of warning to scold you. When I find a praying mantis like this one, they are often on a rose bush which is where I found this one. Well actually it was on the trellis where the rose was, but I think he’d made his way from the rose over to it in hopes he could scare off dusk’s unwanted interloper.

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For who scorns the day of small things. ~Excerpt from Zechariah 4:10 ✝

*The collage of praying mantis images at the top created by Natalie from photos via Pinterest

1226. The marvels of daily life are exciting… ~Excerpt from Robert Doisneau

For me, life offers so many
complexly surprising moments
that two beautiful objects
may be equally beautiful or dramatic for
different reasons and at different times.
~Edited and adapted quote
by Diane Ackerman

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You think it will do what? You think it will look like what? You think it will be what color? You think it will be pretty? And stay that way? SURPRISE!!! Ordinarily I love surprises, and when it comes to a rose that is one color as a bud and another after it opens up, I’m good with that kind of surprise. In fact I’m fascinated all by roses which do that or those which are one color on one side of their petals and a completely different color on the other side. Or even ones that are edged in a different color than the rest of the rose are always a lovely and welcome surprise. But when a gorgeous rose opens, one that might ordinarily be an exciting marvel for several days, and then fries by mid-afternoon because the heat rises to 105, the surprise becomes more of a melancholy shocker which I suppose in some sense is a surprise. Actually it is more of a being taken by surprise kind of thing and certainly not one that is good or welcomed. And as for what’s in this collage below being an exciting marvel, the top part certainly is, but the bottom deep-fried version of it only excited my ire. And as for the marveling in regards to it, I was dumbfounded at how long I’ve managed to endure living in Texas during August without going stark raving mad. Oh well, I reckon we’ve all got to learn to take the good with the bad, and enjoy moments no matter how fleeting they may be.

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Come, let’s drink deeply of love till morning; let’s enjoy ourselves with love! ~Proverbs 7:18  ✝

**All images taken by me in my yard

1218. Flowers do not indulge in sentiment. They indulge in passion… Octave Mirbeau

Surely the flowers of a hundred springs
Are simply the souls of beautiful things!

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The poppies aflame with gold and red
Were the kisses of lovers in days that are fled.

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The purple pansies with dew-drops pearled
Were the rainbow dreams of a youngling world.

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The lily, white as a star apart,
Was the first pure prayer of a virgin heart.

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The daisies that dance and twinkle so
Were the laughter of children in long ago.

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The sweetness of all true friendship yet
Lives in the breath of the mignonette.

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To the white narcissus there must belong
The very delight of a maiden’s song.

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And the rose, all flowers of the earth above,
Was a perfect, rapturous thought of love.

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Oh! surely the blossoms of all the springs
Must be the souls of beautiful things.
~Lucy Maud Montgomery

My beloved is to me a cluster of henna blossoms from the vineyards of En Gedi. ~Song of Songs 1:14  ✝

**All images via Pinterest; collage by Natalie

1161. What a lovely thing a rose is! ~Arthur Conan Doyle

The red rose whispers of passion,
And the white rose breathes of love;
O, the red rose is a falcon,
And the white rose is a dove.
~John Boyle O’Reilly

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Oh!
Whoa! Look
At that amazing beauty!
Wow and wow again, I declare!
Who is that dark and sultry one I see?
She’s the Queen of Hearts they say, and she
Is said to be a dusky and sensually red rose who
Masquerades not as dark and pink magenta red but
One who’s shadowy with smoldering black overtones.
La Dame de Coeur is her real name and verily she’s the
“Ooh la la” hybrid daughter of two other “femme fatales”
Of great acclaim and renown, Peace and Independence.
Not only a stunning and truly red rose is she, but also
Freely does she bear large, double, fragrant flowers
This queen who begins life in hot and fiery hues
And then ages from scarlet to regal crimson
Over leaves which are ever so green.
~Natalie Scarberry

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There is simply the rose; it is perfect
in every moment of its existence.
~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Then our sons in their youth will be like well-nurtured plants, and our daughters will be like pillars carved to adorn a palace. ~Psalm 144:12  ✝

**I’ve eyed this rose in the Antique Rose Emporium catalog for years and finally decided to buy one this spring and I’m in love with her. She’s actually an even prettier red than these photos show. Red just never appears to be as pretty in digital photos for some reason.