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Archive for the ‘Nature’s Colors and Shapes’ Category

Easter bunny Spring 2014

Local bunnies are quickly changing their winter coats for brown ones these days.  Though they may still be streaked with white above their noses and along their backsides, soon the snowshoe hares will be wearing solid brown.  Make that, solid chocolate brown.

snowshoe hare spring coat

Peter Rabbit on the runActually, it’s more like tawny brown.  But let’s not split hares.

Why you ask?  Well, it’s neither because brown is the new white in the Spring fashion world.  Nor is it because Peter Rabbit wore brown in Beatrix Potter’s children’s books.  Though naughty as he was, he did look quite charming.

They’re not wearing brown because the snow has *finally* disappeared from our neck of the woods and with it, all winter season apparel.

No, the reason why the local hares are wearing brown this week is because the daylight hours are getting longer.   Snowshoe hares have the most sensitive of eyes when it comes to differences in light.  Perhaps this is why they respond so readily with a change in fur color in spring and fall.

Easter bunny in woods

And since Easter takes place in late April this year, I’m sure the Easter Bunny will also be wearing a tawny coat.  However, in years when Easter takes place in March, he may very well be wearing white.  It’s all about camouflage with bunnies, whether they’re keeping a hop ahead of predators or sneaking around to hide Easter eggs.

bunny thinking

Wondering where the best places might be to hide eggs in the yard.

Hoppy Easter to all!

Text and photographs copyright Amy-Lynn Bell 2014

 

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dawn july 9 2013

Summer seems to take forever to arrive to this part of the world.  Sometimes love can feel like that too.  Despite the long anticipation, we often feel unprepared for its arrival.

This past week’s heat wave was overwhelming but it’s hard to complain after such a long wait.   The best we can do is embrace its offerings and enjoy each caress of summer warmth on our limbs.

The earth has received the embrace of the sun and we shall see the results of that love.
~ Sitting Bull

pink peony

Peonies in the garden open their inner hearts gladly.  How many of us dare to open our hearts so courageously to love?  The combination of warm rains and sparkling sunshine has increased the size and number of their blooms.  For some the abundance is a burden that can only be carried so long.  How easily we too can flounder under the weight of  all the responsibilities that accompany love.

peonies falling over

Wild Ragged Robin flowers seem to have a more modest response.  Their delicate petals stretch out in the sun as if to say ‘Here I am World.  Take me as I am.’  Perhaps the happiest souls among us are those who simply feel loved for themselves, just as they are.

pink ragged robin

On the seashore, wet purplish-pink Irish Moss sparkles in the sunshine.  If we are loved consistently and unconditionally, do we not begin to reflect love in the same way?

pink irish moss on shore

Love has its own time, its own season, and its own reasons for coming and going. You cannot bribe it or coerce it or reason it into staying. You can only embrace it when it arrives and give it away when it comes to you.
~ Kent Nerburn

new growth on partridgeberry bush

In the back woods, new pink growth emerges from a partridgeberry bush, ravaged by hungry wildlife earlier this spring.  Where there’s sunshine and warm rain, there’s the promise of an abundant harvest once the summer’s past.  Perhaps the greatest comfort of love’s embrace is hope for the future.

Text and photographs Amy-Lynn Bell 2013

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soft morning light on seagrass

Behind the shore, where the dune grass grows, that’s where we’re walking today.  The sun is burning off the rest of the morning’s fog and the grass sparkles where its rays manage to shine through holes in the mist.  The golden grass is dried and brittle in springtime.  I can’t believe it’s been a quarter century since I first felt it beneath my feet.

sand dune haven

We’ve come to this place so many times, you and I, looking for fox paths and ant hills in the sand. We sit in the same spot and together we look out to the ocean.  I dream of African shores with hot sparkling sand across the Atlantic while you ask one more time if it’s still too cold to go in the water.  What three year old doesn’t come to the beach with a plan to enjoy at least one quick splash in the waves?

The golden grass and the color of your hair remind me how much you’ve tamed me these past few years.  All these twenty five years, the dune grass has been of no use to me.  Until now.

hair the color of dried grass

Wheat is of no use to me. The wheat fields have nothing to say to me. And that is sad. But you have hair that is the color of gold.  Think how wonderful that will be when you have tamed me!  The grain, which is also golden, will bring me back the thought of you.  And I shall love to listen to the wind in the wheat . . .
~ The Fox to The Little Prince
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Text and photographs copyright Amy-Lynn Bell 2013

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Come to the marsh to see how the rising sun paints the morning sky.  Its palette is bolder than Van Gogh’s and softer than Monet’s.

I experience a period of frightening clarity in those moments when nature is so beautiful.
~ Vincent Van Gogh

Each morning’s painting is a revelation, presenting a selection of hues never seen together before and certainly never to be seen again.  Not even the rocks can say they’ve seen it all before.  Gray surrenders to blushes of coral and pink.  Clouds only serve to enhance the effect.

Look with your eyes but see with your soul the uniqueness of dawn’s unveiling.

If the sun dawned in the marsh and there was nobody there to see it, would it not still be beautiful?  Perhaps the herons would like to answer that question.

Surely the word ‘awesome’ should be reserved for such reflections of light on water.  Perhaps those who overuse that word these days have never witnessed such a wonder.

No matter how many times  I see the sun painting the morning sky and marsh water, my excitement doesn’t wane.  Somehow, the sun never disappoints, and despite my expectations of spectacular color combinations, I am always marvelously surprised.

These landscapes of water and reflection have become an obsession.
~ Claude Monet

Text and photographs copyright Amy-Lynn Bell 2012

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Living in the woods means I have to walk towards the horizon in order to get a clear view of the dawn.  Layers of clouds made this morning’s walk especially worthwhile.  Clear skies seldom give sunrises as spectacular as this one.  Who knew there could be so many varieties of pink?

Though many find it difficult to wake before dawn, I’ve always found it easy.  Even as a child I felt that sleeping past sunrise meant I was missing out on something.  Perhaps it’s because that quiet time of day allowed me to spend some time alone with my grandfather or my dad, a precious commodity when you’re one of five children.  Years later, I realized they probably woke up early in the hope of spending some quiet moments by themselves.

Besides silence and solitude, every dawn offers endless possibilities for the day ahead.  What will happen today?  A new challenge or the completion of an old one?  Even a change of heart is possible.  Nothing seems too difficult now before the hours begin to wear us down.

Returning home, the glow from the rising sun is barely visible behind the trees.  I wonder at all I would have missed had I not ventured out.

Did you catch the rosy glow of the rising sun this morning?  No worries if you missed it.  Nature has a back-up plan for all who needed that extra bit of rest and stayed in bed past dawn.

Some of the flowers captured the dawn’s pink light at sunrise and promise to hold it for you until sunset.

Text and photographs copyright Amy-Lynn Bell 2012

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The dark silhouettes of trees stand in stark contrast to the awakening sky. Dawn is on its way.

Hope begins in the dark, the stubborn hope that if you just show up and try to do the right thing, the dawn will come. You wait and watch and work: you don’t give up.
~ Anne Lamott

‘Good morning,’ the sun whispers to the earth. ‘It’s time to wake up.’

‘There’s a long, full day ahead, so I thought I’d make the transition smoother with a soft blush of pink.’

The beauty of light is reflected all around us…  if we’re willing to open our eyes to see it.

Each time dawn appears, the mystery is there in its entirety.
~ Rene Daumal

For the mind disturbed, the still beauty of dawn is nature’s finest balm.
~ Edwin Way Teale

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