1285. Even if something is left undone, everyone must take time to sit still and watch the leaves turn. ~Elizabeth Lawrence

Bittersweet October.
The mellow, messy, leaf-kicking,
perfect pause between the opposing
miseries of summer and winter.
~Carol Bishop Hipps

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Do you see any leaves turning autumn colors in the photo above? Do you get any sense at all that it’s cool and crisp outside the window, the window that’s right here where I sit to work at my computer, the window from which I shot that not-so-great photo through the venetian blinds? Sadly neither do I! It’s almost November and that “opposing misery of summer” of which Hipps speaks has NOT gone! I’m certain because when I went out in the yard just a few minutes ago to take some photos, I came in just as dripping wet as I had all summer. It might be about ten degrees cooler our there than it was in August, but with the high humidity we are STILL having, it continues to feel like I’m walking into a sauna when I open the door to go out! So where or where is Autumn??? Did it get lost somewhere along its way to Texas??? Perhaps so because according to the National Weather Service the ending of the year and throughout the winter for much of the US will be warmer and drier as the result of another “La Niña” that has set up in the Pacific. (See the photo below where it shows the predicted varying degrees of heat and lack of rainfall as the year ends in the US.) And that makes for an oh so unlucky me because I’m here in north central Texas. Yippee, huh?! That’s why when I read your blogs about cool, crisp days that include photos of lovely autumn leaves, I either begin to salivate like a rabid dog or my eyes start tearing up because Autumn is one of my favorite times of the year and I’m so ready for it to come! Oh, I know, who wants to listen to a whiny old lady rant? So off I go to find a way, despite the “misery,” to self-soothe and seek the presence of things for which to be grateful. Breathe, Natalie, just breathe…

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“But I, with shouts of grateful praise, will sacrifice to you. What I have vowed I will make good. I will say, ‘Salvation comes from the Lord.’” ~Jonah 2:9  ✝

**I added the border around the photo I took out my window so you would get the feel of looking out a window.

1164. Drip, drip, drip in cadenced rhythm fall the rain’s dotted silver threads from heaven above. ~Natalie Scarberry

I looked out the window at the falling rain
and gave myself over to the compelling urge to put
myself entirely in the keeping of this rainy day.
~Edited lines from a poem
by Raymond Carver

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Drip, drip, dripping from on high it falls
Not in torrents this time, but in a tender grayness.
Fall, fall, falling through space it comes
Traveling from who knows where and what source
Yet it brings familiar scents and thoughts of yore.
Would I, could I, unravel such things!

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Puddles, puddles, puddling everywhere
Making pools of water like bits of glassy mirrors.
Hang, hang, hanging are leaves and flowery faces
Weighed down by the heaviness of daylong showers
Born of lowering gray clouds leaden with water
Yet there is loveliness in their blurry, drooping poses.
Would I, could I, paint such things.

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Memories, memories, making their way through the rain
With smacks of this fragrance and that, places and people,
Joys and pain, good things and bad things all tied up
In “raindrops on roses” and more of my favorite things
That sparkle and forever accompany rainy days and quiet ways.
Yet there’s gladness in it all for it’s the sum and magic of a life.
Would I, could I, understand such things.
~Natalie Scarberry

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Last night the rain spoke to me
slowly, saying, what joy to come falling
out of the brisk cloud, to be happy again
in a new way on the earth!
~Excerpt from a poem
by Mary Oliver

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“Can you fathom the mysteries of God? Can you probe the limits of the Almighty?” ~Job 11:7  ✝

**All images taken by me in my yard today while holding an umbrella in one hand and trying to manage the camera with the other one.

1126. The best thing one can do when it’s raining is to let it rain. ~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

I am the rain
gently tapping
on the rooftop

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And the drops
sliding down
your window

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I glide
past the glow
of your lamp

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Then I
lose my grip
and slip away
~Edited poem by Christy Ann Martinez

He(God) provides rain for the earth; he sends water on the countryside. ~Job 5:10  ✝

**Some are photos I’ve taken and others I found on Pixabay; collages created by me

1095. Every moment of light and dark is a miracle. ~Walt Whitman

In order for the light to shine so brightly,
the darkness must be present.
~Francis Bacon

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Three days from now, we’ll officially leave winter, the season of darkness and death, and enter spring, the season of light and rebirth. So I decided to share some thoughts about light and darkness, and since today is St. Patrick’s day and John O’Donohue was an Irish poet, I chose the following lines because some of what O’Donohue describes herein resembles as well what happens to the earth at times.

Light cannot see inside things.
That is what the dark is for:
Minding the interior,
Nurturing the draw of growth
Through places where death
In its own way turns into life.
In the glare of neon times,
Let our eyes not be worn
By surfaces that shine
With hunger made attractive.
That our thoughts may be true light,
Finding their way into words
Which have the weight of shadow
To hold the layers of truth.
That we never place our trust
In minds claimed by empty light,
Where one-sided certainties
Are driven by false desire.
When we look into the heart,
May our eyes have the kindness
And reverence of candlelight.
That the searching of our minds
Be equal to the oblique
Crevices and corners where
The mystery continues to dwell,
Glimmering in fugitive light.
When we are confined inside
The dark house of suffering
That moonlight might find a window.
When we become false and lost
That the severe noon-light
Would cast our shadow clear.
When we love, that dawn-light
Would lighten our feet
Upon the waters.
As we grow old, that twilight
Would illuminate treasure
In the fields of memory.
And when we come to search for God,
Let us first be robed in night,
Put on the mind of morning
To feel the rush of light
Spread slowly inside
The color and stillness
Of a found world.
~John O’Donohue

He (God) reveals the deep things of darkness and disorder, where even light is like darkness. ~Job 12:22  ✝

**Image found on Pinterest

1055. Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it. ~Confucius

A thing of beauty is a joy for ever:
Its loveliness increases; it will never
Pass into nothingness; but still will keep
A bower quiet for us, and a sleep
Full of sweet dreams, and health, and quiet breathing.
-John Keats

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There’s not the tiniest fragment of Creation that doesn’t possess some kind of beauty and in so doing express the nature and image of God. Eriugena, a 9th century Irish poet, theologian, and philosopher, said “God is the beauty which is in everything that has been created and His beauty draws all things to Himself.” So it is that whatever form beauty takes it is never anything less than the holy work of Yahweh’s hands. Interestingly, over the years a number of people have commented on my ability to find beauty even in the most ordinary things. After thinking on that for some time, I decided that it may be because beauty has intentionally made itself manifest in all things in order to hold me in His keeping. It’s like He opened my eyes to see through a window unto heaven and His glory, and its splendors continually stream through it. Christopher Morley said that “in every man’s heart there’s a secret nerve that answers to the vibrations of beauty.” I believe those “vibrations” are the Lord’s way of speaking to us, and when we hear His call, acknowledge it, and draw near Him, He is able to instruct us in His ways. The learning of His “invisible qualities” teaches us, among other things, about His higher love, an encompassing, vast love which leads us to become more caring, kind, and compassionate. Perhaps then, if it’s true that I see beauty others miss, it’s because I look daily for God’s shadow over humanity and Creation so that I can get more and more glimpses into His mystery and His continuing activity here.

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  ✝

**All images via Pinterest

704. …What lies beyond the borders of this peaceful place… ~Excerpted lyric by Pyramaze

Outside the window
sits a pot of gerberas
opening the day

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Beyond them bloom some
roses in the kitchen bed
near the patio

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Onward is the rose
covered arch over a small
porch and rocking chair

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Bye, bye for now but
if you come back we will take
other looks beyond
~All haikus by written by
Natalie Scarberry

My first waking move every morning is from my bed to my reclining chair in front of my big glass doors that open onto the patio. From there I have a commanding view of about half of my backyard. And since the back of my house faces due east, I’m privileged to watch daybreak through the towering trees every morning. Even when it’s cloudy, the light slowly and captivatingly increases as the day dawns. This time of year, sunny or cloudy, what’s beyond those windows is the greatest show on earth. Its beauty represents years of clearing and digging and planting most of which was done, I might add, while I was still teaching. Now that I am retired, I am at last able to reap fully the rewards of the Lord’s blessings therein and my years of longing and labor. And I can honestly say that it was worth every bit of the hard work, the set backs, the failures, the tears, the back issues, and the worn-out knee which I just had replaced. For this–this piece of ground with its flowering beds is a holy place, a sacred sanctuary, a little piece of Eden in which my soul is fed by Him whose Presence yet haunts His Creation. It is where I’m reminded every day that I am His and He is mine, and I thank you Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, for this place and that gift.

You will see it with your own eyes and say, ‘Great is the Lord–even beyond the borders of Israel!‘ ~Malachi 1:5   ✝

548. The doors we open and close each day decide the lives we live. ~Flora Whittemore

Life is full of beauty.
Notice it.
Notice the bumble bee,
the small child,
and the smiling faces.
Smell the rain,
and feel the wind.
~Ashley Smith

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How Would You Live Then?
What if a hundred rose-breasted grosbeaks
blew in circles around your head? What if
the mockingbird came into the house with you and
became your advisor? What if
the bees filled your walls with honey and all
you needed to do was ask them and they would fill
the bowl? What if the brook slid downhill just
past your bedroom window so you could listen
to its slow prayers as you fell asleep? What if
the stars began to shout their names, or to run
this way and that way above the clouds? What if
you painted a picture of a tree, and the leaves
began to rustle, and a bird cheerful sang
from its painted branches? What if you suddenly saw
that the silver of water was brighter than the silver
of money? What if you finally saw
that the sunflowers, turning toward the sun all day
and every day — who knows how, but they do it — were
more precious, more meaningful than gold?
~Mary Oliver

They have ears, but cannot hear, noses but cannot smell. ~Psalm 115:6   ✝

**Image via Pinterest