1061. You never enjoy the world aright, till the sea itself floweth in your veins, till you are clothed with the heavens and crowned with the stars. ~Thomas Traherne

The voice of the sea
speaks to the soul.
The touch of the sea is sensuous,
enfolding the body 
in its soft,
close embrace.
~Kate Chopin

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I had to go. I just had to go down to the sea today if only through photographic memories. I haven’t been to the beach in so long, and it appears that I won’t get to go this year either, at least not for months and months. As a child, I was weaned and grew up on the beautiful, blue waters of the Pacific Ocean, and since then sand, shore, and sea have haunted me. Via sensory perceptions even as a young child I heard a voice, a clear voice-a familiar voice-a welcome voice-a sacred voice who reached down into the depths of my soul to touch me in ways that are still not easy to articulate. But here goes. Since the sea is always moving in its ceaselessness, I became aware of its cadenced rhythms early on. Day after day, night after night its undulations never stopped, and I found myself comforted by the sounds they created. Even when it was just along the shore and not out in a boat on the deep water, the songs of the sea continued to poignantly reverberate as they rolled in on the waves to the sandy shore. These were songs as primordial as the days and as ancient as the Holy One Himself who yet hovers over the waters, and when I sat quietly listening, waiting, and watching, I began to feel and internalize the pulsing rhythms of the sea while their songs filled up the space around me, its devout, hearkening witness. “Wild silences,” as haunting as the call of the gulls, were “heard” as well, and the elements of light and darkness affected and enhanced the ocean’s charms, chants, and silences as it enfolded me in its embrace. What’s more a lonely beach, devoid of crowds, also transports of delight to the magical, mystique of the sea. For it was then, and only then, that I was privy to the voices of the ocean’s more wistful “shy presences,” the ones with the subtle, emotive melodies.

If you look at the map in the collage you will see a blue marker where our house at 68 Prospect Avenue in Long Beach, California was. It was only a half a block from Ocean Boulevard, and once I crossed that busy street, all I had to do was take the stairs down from the seawall onto the sand. Between the houses on each street ran an alley way that you can see in one of the photos beneath the map. This passage way was one of my favorite places to travel as it was along those fences  that so many of the cherished, fragrant flowers grew, and in the distance you can actually see the ocean.

The seas have lifted up, Lord, the seas have lifted up their voice; the seas have lifted up their pounding waves. ~Psalm 93:3  ✝

**Images via Pinterest and Safari; collage created by Natalie

1050. Painting is silent poetry, and poetry is painting that speaks. ~Plutarch

I would define, in brief,
the poetry of words as
the rhythmical creation of beauty.
~Edgar Allan Poe

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Musical Notation: 1 The physicality of the religious poets should not be taken idly. 
He or she, who loves God, will look most deeply into His works. Clouds are not only vapor, but shape, mobility, silky sacks of nourishing rain. The pear orchard is not only profit, but a paradise of light. The luna moth, who lives but a few days, sometimes only a few hours, has a pale green wing whose rim is like a musical notation. Have you noticed?

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We had a dog once that adored flowers; no matter how briskly she went through the fields, she must stop and consider the lilies, tiger lilies, and other blossoming things along her way. Another dog of our household loved sunsets and would run off in the evenings to the most western part of the shore and sit down on his haunches for the whole show, that pink and peach colored swollenness. Then home he would come trotting in the alpenglow, that happy dog. ~Mary Oliver

The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they reveal knowledge. They have no speech, they use no words; no sound is heard from them. Yet their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world. ~Psalm 19:1-4  ✝

**All images via Pinterest; collages by Natalie

711. And this, our life, exempt from public haunt, finds tongues in trees, books in the running brooks, sermons in stones, and good in everything. ~William Shakespeare

There is a pleasure in the pathless woods,
There is a rapture on the lonely shore,
There is society, where none intrudes,
By the deep sea, and music in its roar:
I love not man the less, but Nature more.
~George Gordon, Lord Byron


Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves. ~John Muir


Oh, how I love the sea and at no time more than when I’m there at dusk or dawn.  I took these photos on a visit to Galveston several years ago, and they still speak to me as much of God as does my garden. While the bird and I walked along the “lonely shore” together, you’ll notice that it stopped twice as if waiting and watching and listening.  I believe it’s because in the dim quietude we both clearly heard the sacred songs of the spheres and the music of the deep sea’s roar.  So let us drink a cup of the “good in everything” today as we celebrate the earth, its bounty, and its beauty.  And let us not forget to praise the Lord now and always for all His gifts and goodness!

For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities–his eternal power and divine nature–have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.  ~Romans 1:20   ✝

527. If you want to be reminded of the love of the Lord, just watch the sunrise! Jeannette Walls

How sweet the morning air is!
See how that one little cloud floats
like a pink feather
from some gigantic flamingo.
~Arthur Conan Doyle

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Somewhere, out at the edges, the night
Is turning and the waves of darkness
Begin to brighten the shore of dawn

The heavy dark falls back to earth
And the freed air goes wild with light,
The heart fills with fresh, bright breath
And thoughts stir to give birth to color.
~John O’Donohue

In Him(Jesus) was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. ~John 1:4-5   ✝

**Image via Pinterest

326. And this, our life, exempt from public haunt, finds tongues in trees, books in the running brooks, sermons in stones, and good in everything.
~William Shakespeare 



Pink petals passing
Scents above so high
Painted porcelain perfection
Blossoms caress the sky

Swaying silent shroud
Suitors strolling by
Pink petals passing
Lover’s gentle sigh

Pastel hues falling
Slow fluttering grace
Pink petals passing
Lining streams in lace

Pink petals passing
Smoothest transit by
Soft essence floating
In most subtle lullaby

Inducing springtime slumber
Upon a satin shore
Sailing with the current
Pink petals pass before
~Mary Fumento


The sun shines down.
Pink flowers glow softly.
A gentle breeze rustles the leaves.
Birds flutter about the branches.
A young girl sits below it.
Relaxing in the shade.
The sweet smell of cherry blossoms fills the air.
And I know
I am home.
~Kylee Bartz

Let the heavens rejoice, let the earth be glad; let the sea resound, and all that is in it. Let the fields be jubilant, and everything in them; let all the trees of the forest sing for joy. Let all creation rejoice before the Lord… ~Psalm 96:11-13 ✝

Jesus, I am captured by Your grace and caught in Your imfinite embrace!

172. Over everything connected with autumn there lingers some golden spell–some unseen influence that penetrates the soul with its mysterious power. ~Northern Advocate

O Autumn, laden with fruit, and stain’d
With the blood of the grape, pass not, but sit
Beneath my shady roof; there thou may’st rest,
And tune they jolly voice to my fresh pipe,
And all the daughters of the year shall dance!
Sing now the lusty song of fruits and flowers.
~William Blake, English poet


*Photo courtesy Mike Bizeau

Lusty indeed is the dance of the year’s 4th child!  Escalating as she goes, she regales herself in glorious colors, and whilst strutting her hour upon earth’s stage, she reigns in majesty.  As she prepares the land for its Sabbath, her chariot enters the eastern sky at dawn with pink and purple banners flying high or she comes veiled in gray from a fog or torrents of rain.  Then after day is done she exits on the western horizon in mellow twilight, or in a blaze of red and gold, or swallowed up in the wetness of massive clouds.  When not thundering “mournful melodies” for all to hear, she’s belting out songs of joyfulness until she perishes in deep December softly playing “the harps of leafless trees.”

There is pleasure in the pathless woods,
There is rapture in the lonely shore,
There is society where none intrudes,
By the deep sea, and music in its roar;
I love not man less, but Nature more,
~Lord Byron, English poet

It wasn’t until Mike Bizeau posted this photo of fall-colored succulents along a beach north of Mendocino, California, that I realized lusty autumn not only sings in forests and gardens but also in places on the “lonely shore.”  What a splendid artist is the holy Yahweh!

Sing to Him, sing praise to Him; tell all of His wonderful acts.  ~1 Chronicles 16:9  ✝

6. There is pleasure in the pathless woods. There is rapture in the lonely shore. There is society where none intrudes. ~Lord Byron

She sat down in a weed patch, her elbows on her knees,
and kept her eyes on the small mysterious world of the ground.
In the shade and sun of grass blade forests,
small living things had their metropolis.
~Nancy Price


In and around blossoming things there is another mysterious metropolis.  This one is above the soil, and therein airborne things move around yearning to “possess the sweet of every flower that blooms.”  In that realm two simple equations are in place:  a) if there are no flowers there are no pollinators;  b)  if there are no pollinators there are no flowers, no fruits, no crops.  The hum or buzz of a pollinating agent and a flower’s blooming go hand in hand; together they commit reproductive acts of love as they dance the sacred dance of life orchestrated by the Lord.  In so doing they “remind us that there are other voices, other rhythms, other strivings, and other fulfillments. . .” in God’s grand plan.

Recently in a National Geographic snippet on the internet, the narrator remarked that present-day humanity is the recipient of a 400,000,000 year old legacy bequeathed by earth. Imagine that!  For all those years the sun has not failed to rise and set at its appointed time, fruits and crops have not failed to burst forth and ripen, and the earth has not failed to make its trip around the sun.  One season has followed another repeating the Genesis story over and over again as per the Lord’s plan.  Like the fruits and flowers and pollinators, our time here is very brief, and we who are fashioned by the same holy Hands as the sun and earth are no less adored and significant in our loving Father’s eyes.

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens. . .  ~Ecclesiastes 3:1   ✝