One day, as I was sitting out in the backyard enjoying the solitude of nature, I became aware of a small group of grackles sitting up high in a pine tree bantering back and forth to one another. Though I wasn’t sure the gist of their conversation, the pleasant exchanges seemed to be in harmony with the peacefulness of the morning.
“The happiest conversation is that of which nothing is distinctly remembered, but a general effect of pleasing impression.” ~Samuel Johnson
Many of the flowering trees are in bloom right now in West Tennessee, adding striking color to the landscape and heralding the coming of spring.
“Blossom by blossom the spring begins.” ~A. C. Swinburne
“So imagine that the lovely moon is playing just for you – everything makes music if you really want it to.” ~Giles Andreae
No flower means spring to me more than the daffodil. I look forward to the time of year when the wild daffodils spring up in the fields and along the roadside. Oftentimes, they mark the spot where a house once stood but is now long gone. Over the years, the bulbs reproduce and leave bright yellow clusters for all to enjoy.
… When all at once I saw a crowd
A host of golden daffodils
Beside the lake beneath the trees
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze …”
― William Wordsworth
The red maple trees in our yard are flowering and make a pretty backdrop for the various birds that come and go from their busy branches.
… After that unheard-of coldness,
That intolerable Winter,
Came the Spring with all its splendor,
All its birds and all its blossoms …
~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow – (The Song of Hiawatha)
The Northern Cardinals have been plentiful in our backyard this winter. I spotted these two cuties in our bushes one afternoon. The female, though not as flashy as the bright red male, has lovely brown-gold plumage with warm red accents and a distinctive crest.
“On matters of style, swim with the current, on matters of principle, stand like a rock.” ~Thomas Jefferson
A Red-tailed Hawk sitting in a tree along the Mississippi River levee.
“For to have faith, is to have wings.” ~J. M. Barrie
I always enjoy taking a peaceful stroll in the woods. Even on gray days, when there is little else to see, a variety of interesting fungi can be spotted along the trail.
“Leave the beaten track occasionally and dive into the woods. You will be certain to find something you have never seen before.” ~Alexander Graham Bell
“When I bought my farm, I did not know what a bargain I had in the bluebirds, daffodils and thrushes; as little did I know what sublime mornings and sunsets I was buying.” ~Ralph Waldo Emerson
Earlier this week, as I was out walking shortly before sunset, I came upon this Barred Owl. It was sitting on the long arm of an oak tree that was stretching across our country road. Though I sometimes hear the hooting of a Barred Owl in the distance, this is the first time I had come across one up close.
“Life’s tragedy is that we get old too soon and wise too late.” ~Benjamin Franklin