1245. The universe is full of magical things patiently waiting for our wits to grow sharper. ~Eden Phillpotts

One who not merely beholds the outward shows of things,
but catches a glimpse of the soul that looks out of them,
whose garment and revelation they are–if he be such, I say,
he will stand, for more than a moment, speechless with something
akin to that which made the morning stars sing together.
~George MacDonald

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A new day woke to dawn’s sweet song
Winged creatures warbled to rejoice
Sunlight chased the night shadows long

Blue skies bow as day’s colors hoist
Hued symphony of the new dawn’s might
Winged creatures warbled to rejoice

Nature’s perfection in our sight
Creation gives salutations
Hued symphony of new dawn’s might

Rivers and streams sang oblations
Watery praises raised on high
Creation gives salutations

The sun marched across the sky
A glittering parade in stride
Watery praises raised on high

The light grew stronger as the night died
A new day woke to Dawn’s sweet song
A glittering parade in stride
Sunlight chased the night shadows long.
~A terzanelle by Kristen

Wake up, my soul! Wake up, harp and lyre! I will wake up the dawn. ~Psalm 57:8  ✝

726. All of earth is crammed with heaven and every bush aflame with God, but only those who see take off their shoes. ~Elizabeth Barrett Browning

Even a stone, and more easily a flower or a bird,
could show you the way back to God, to the Source, to yourself.
When you look at it or hold it & let it be
without imposing a word of mental label on it,
a sense of awe, of wonder, arises within you.
Its essence silently communicates itself to you
and reflects your own essence back to you.
~Eckhart Tolle

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Some time in March here in this part of the world the garden begins its ascent out of winter’s “vale of grief.” By the time March has gone, the flowering quince has already quit, the daffodils have departed, the tulips have been toppled, the crocus have concluded their blooming, and the hellebores have halted their show. April brings more delights, but after it has gone, the foxgloves have fallen by the wayside, the peonies have been pummeled by the rain, and the hyacinth have handed over their pink and blue scepters. And somewhere amid all that other splendor, the jasmine climbed, the penstemons’ purple bells appeared, and wisteria fell from on high while white bridal wreath spirea cascaded daintily down long, arching branches where bees and bright butterflies searched for flowery nectar. All the while, the crescendos of spring’s symphony were increasing, and the blankets of cold, laden with death were slowly but surely being consumed by spring’s warming nights and days. Then as the music of spring reached it frenzied rhythms, the melodious strains mounted garden walls and pushed past garden gates to fill busy streets where mankind pursues its harried madness. And there her music captured the inclined ears of some to draw them into her web where for eons she has recanted the magical mystery of life, ever hopeful and opulently abundant. So loudly does springtime declare the glory of God, in fact, that it’s hard to believe that anyone who is not deaf or blind could disclaim God’s existence for it’s His unmistakable voice that calls out from every stone, every leaf, every flower, every insect, every bird to the inheritors of Eden.

The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of His hands. ~Psalm 19:1   ✝

**All images via Pinterest are of species named Eden; collage created by Natalie

528. Behold congenial autumn comes, the Sabbath of the year. ~John Logan

There’s music in the sighing of a reed;
There’s music in the gushing of a rill;
There’s music in all things, if men had ears:
Their earth is but an echo of the spheres.
~Lord Byron

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Year after year I fall in love again with autumn, and this one is no different than all the others. Even though few leaves have changed colors, there are tangible signs of Keats “season of mists and mellow fruitfulness.” Samples of such manifest themselves daily in the form of ripening seeds, nuts, hips, berries, fruits, and acorns. As well several crisp mornings have filled autumn’s cup with its quintessential sanctity, and some shrouded in foggy mists have revealed squirrels scurrying about with greater urgency while birds, soon to pull out on migratory treks, feast on seeds and berries like the ones in the photo. These are American beautyberries, and they first appeared months ago in shades of pretty, pale greens, but as autumn drew near they deepened into their stunning shade of magenta and began issuing forth tunes in this, the next series of earth’s delightful melodies.

Passages in Scripture indicate that music originated with God and accompanied Creation, and there are those who yet hear the continuing echoes of Yahweh’s “Divine symphony” as made evident in the lines I quoted from Lord Byron. The American evangelist, Beth Moore, says that a song is “the fluent language of the soul,” and I couldn’t agree more because it is my soul that “hears” the myriads of earth’s melodic voices. I think perhaps the hymns of nature are more discernible in spring and autumn after they’ve been weighed down by winter’s oppression or nearly snuffed out by the intensity of summer’s fires, but earth’s music never fails to play on. And whenever the “echo of the spheres” and “the music in all things” of which Baron Byron spoke is heard, it is a privilege to “listen” to the “songs of the morning stars and the angels shout for joy” (Job 38:7). And how blessed are we, the peoples of the earth, that God “takes delight” in us, that “He quiets” us “with His love,” and that “He rejoices” over us “with singing.”

“The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.”   ~Zephaniah 3:17   ✝

388. The greatest gift of the garden is the restoration of the five senses. ~Hanna Rion

How could such sweet and wholesome hours
Be reckoned but with herbs and flowers?
~Andrew Marvell

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Then the heart, the poor jaded heart, that must etherize itself to endure the grimness of city life at all how subtly it begins throbbing again in unison with the great symphony of the natural. The awakened heart can sense in spring in the air when there is no visible suggestion in calendar or frosted earth, and knowing the songful secret, the can cause the feet to dance through a day that would only mean winter to an urbanite.

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The sense of taste can only be restored by a constant diet of unwilted vegetables and freshly picked fruit.

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The delicacy of touch comes back gradually by tending injured birdlings, by the handling of fragile plants, and by the acquaintance with different leaf textures, which finally makes one able to distinguish a plant, even in the dark, by its Irish tweed, silken or fur finish.

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And the foot, how tangibly it becomes sensitized; how instinctively it avoids a plant even when the eye is busy elsewhere. On the darkest night I can traverse the rocky ravine, the thickets, the sinuous paths through overgrown patches, and never stumble, scratch myself or crush a leaf. My foot knows every unevenness of each individual bit of garden, and adjusts itself lovingly without the conscious thought of brain.

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To the ears that have learned to catch the first tentative lute of a marsh frog in spring, orchestras are no longer necessary. To the eyes that have regained their sight, no wonder lies in the craftsmanship of a tiny leaf form of an inconsequential weed, than is to be found in a bombastic arras. To the resuscitated nose is revealed the illimitable secrets of earth and incense, the whole gamut of flower perfume, and other fragrant odors too intangible to be classed, odors which wing the spirit to realms our bodies are as yet too clumsy to inhabit.

~Excerpted paragraphs from Let’s Make a Flower Garden
by Hanna Rion (1912)

For hardship does not spring from the soil, nor does trouble sprout from the ground. ~Job 5:6 ✝

Thank you, Lord Jesus, that you save, you heal, you restore, and you reveal Your Father’s heart to us! You have captured me with grace and I’m caught in Your infinite embrace! Like Saint Hildegard Lord, may I too be a feather on your holy breath and spread, like seeds, the gospel abroad.

** Images via Pinterest

314. The seasons are what a symphony ought to be: four perfect movements in harmony with each other. ~Arthur Rubenstein, pianist

The air is like a butterfly
With frail blue wings.
The happy earth looks
at the sky and sings.
~Joyce Kilmer

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I will exalt you, my God the King; I will praise your name for ever and ever.  Every day I will praise you and extol your name for ever and ever.  Great is the Lord and most worthy of praise; His greatness no one can fathom.  ~Psalm 145:1-3   ✝