It’s been a quiet time along the shores of Lake Superior Spirit.
As some of you know, it’s been weeks of deep spiritual retreat for me (amidst working while sunlight dapples through my office window at the school, the sound of shrieking laughter at recess, sipping dark mugs of coffee laced with hazelnut creamer, errands, chores and a hundred busy daily doings).
It’s a sweet spring.
Mother deer birth baby fawns in the woods.
Tree leaves unfurl.
When you wander in the forest, you feel newness bursting everywhere. New possibility, new potential.
It’s a potent time of year to wake up, to fully experience, to be.
I’ve relaxed into being more present with the unfolding.
In this moment.
Birds chatter endlessly.
That mating dance of diving and retreating, forward and back.
Some days sun shines between yellow leaf and bark.
Other days sky drizzles rain to newly planted baby lettuce in damp garden soil.
I settle alongside both, drawing up chair window-side or trekking outside, cherishing Spring’s endless lessons of renewal and regeneration.
Spring never hesitates to teach with birdsong or wood tick.
Waves lap endlessly against the shore, shaping and re-shaping our perception of this life.
Joy visits, as does sorrow.
Excitement arrives, as does frustration.
Life continues its duality, its ups, its downs.
I know you do, too.
When you’re totally present in a moment, totally here, not partially here, not six percent here, thoughts dry up. You’re moving, you’re sitting, you’re participating, you’re watching, you’re so close to what’s observed that if you’re not trying at all you’ll realize for two milliseconds or a lifetime you can’t separate what you’re perceiving from what you are.
Saints come and go.
Waves lap and recede.
Sun rises and sets.
Moon opens its womb and winks.
Sometimes nothing arises to shape itself into words except heart’s fluttering song:
We’re alive, we’re alive, we’re alive!
The circle of life circles upon itself in exquisite silence…and sometimes it springs forward to the next precious moment…which, of course, is always now.
What else is there to say, ever again?
Except: Hello precious hummingbird…hello precious moment of life…
Nothing left to say, and it’s enough.
Thank you, gentle reader, for sitting with me in the silence.
I feel gratitude for your presence.
You are such an exceptional writer and photographer. I sat here at my laptop and was transported to your side, as you spoke of the nature that surrounds us all. Beautiful, beautiful.
So lovely Kathy. Deep, long sigh of peace and relaxation.
Good Morning Dear Kathy ♥
Thank you for this beautiful guided meditation. You reached out and took my hand and using your words and your pictures, allowed me to see and hear everything you did. I am grateful for the experience and for the sense of peace in this hectic and sometimes troublesome life.
Your absence has been felt in my life but I understand the need for quiet reflection. You have been so gracious to allow us a peek inside your reflective season.
God Bless You Dear One ♥
Wow, you’d make some kind of hypnotist. I feel relaxed already:-) Thanks.
Nothing left to say but you have certainly found the language as well as photographs to say it.
It is a beautiful meditation on spring, on being here Now!
In having nothing left to say, somehow you still have much to share, of the beauty that is inside you. Peace & Blessings on the moment of NOW always.
Your words and pictures are so inspiring, Kathy, in a calm, serene way. The sound of shrieking laughter at recess reminds me of so many still moments on the beach in the summer, when the sounds of delighted children playing in the waves and the letters on the page I was reading would blend into me and time would disappear.
Did that hummingbird really pause or is your camera very fast? Stunning picture!!! I never heard of a Snowshoe Priest before. The world is full of so many interesting things…
The hummingbird really paused, Barbara…even if my camera is that fast I probably wouldn’t be able to figure out how to capture it! 🙂
I feel like we just took a walk together. Thank you!
Many shades of brilliance here! Thank you!!!!
Peaceful, relaxing, thoughtful. Another gentle reminder to be here now. Thank you.
Yes, thank you for sharing the beauty of your world and helping us to notice our own.
Hmmm….this is lovely, and so peaceful, and such a grand contrast to the hectic swirl I’ve been allowing around me lately. You are an inspiration! Being in the moment, appreciating the beauty of it…being the moment…that’s all there really is. The plots and plans and worries are just a crazy-making game. Thank you for this beautiful contribution!
Ohhhmmmm…. Such a deep sense of tranquility is shining through both your photos and your words, they are in perfect balance with each other… Wishing you a joyfilled spring, dear friend.
Sometimes I wish to hear your voice on a guided meditation, so I can close my eyes and drift away …
Thanks for bringing us along to sit in the silence with you.
“I settle alongside both, drawing up chair window-side or trekking outside, cherishing Spring’s endless lessons of renewal and regeneration.”
Gently with you.
That cup of tea we just shared as we wandered through the trees must have been chamomile with its power to relax the mind and body and instill peace in the soul. Thank you for that!
Beautiful post! Your words complement your pictures and vice versa, so clever. And I just love the picture of the kids running along the shore.
What bliss, such beautiful words and pictures. My blood preasure has just dropped 10 points.
Beautiful shots! There’s nothing quite as beautiful as Spring in the Northwoods! 🙂
I’ve never seen a humming bird … your photo is BEAUTIFUL… clearly little bird is joining you in your little pause, your well earned rest.
The sentiments are universal and so true too… Thank You!
OMG, Kathy, this is beautiful. I love the line about the moon opening its womb to wink–that is TRULY exquisite writing, my friend. Sounds like a peacefully productive time for you.
By the way, I have posted a radically revised version of chapter 1 on my blog today. I would love to know what you think–if you find you have time–whenever, if ever–I value your perspective.
very clever, enjoyed this immensely – beautiful photos, lovely words, joy
Very calming … relaxing … I needed that after this very long day. Thanks
What a gorgeous post, Kathy. Gorgeous picture, beautiful words. 🙂
Just beautiful Kathy. I don’t wish to break the silence, so will just say, I was here with you, enjoying your spring, your gratitude, and the silence. xxx
I like your focus on small wonders, Kathy. The photos draw me into the moment. Your spring in the UP is lovely.
In the garden, digging, planting, puttering about, I am aware that my normally “chattering” brain is silent. I move. I smell. I am. But I don’t think about it. I just AM in the garden.
You AM too !
I love this one.
I read your words and see your pictures and take a deep breath, and with tears welling up, I am thankful for the spring renewal, for time to pause and be in the moment, and for your message.
You’ve said everything here – and so much more. Just breathing in all of the beauty. Thank-you!
Lovely. Thank you for sharing this peace with us.
Beautiful! Very pretty all the pictures are. You have conveyed so many wonderful thoughts in a single blog post. I’ve been missing you & remembering your words for the past few days. May you have a blessed day ahead. See you! 🙂
Also wanted to say, are all these pictures of the same place which was all white during the December? If yes, then Wow!!! Absolutely stunning. Is it easy for you people to adapt to such drastic climatic conditions? Nature is just wonderful. Thank you Kathy for all the pictures in your blog!!
Indeed, Sonali, it’s the same place! We turn from beautiful freezing white to magnificent green. Hard to adapt? Most people adapt quite easily, but others struggle with it. I like the warmth best but that always brings hordes of mosquitoes and black flies and wood ticks…
Lovely light in these beautiful images, Kathy.
Beautiful, Kathy! It sounds like your retreat into the NOW is treating you well. Blessings to you, as always. ((hugs))
…and I feel gratitude for your presence!
What a lovely post!
Beautiful. It’s all I can think of to say. Namaste. 🙂
Thank you all for pausing to peacefully share your beautiful presence here. Truly appreciating all of you…you all feel like shining fireflies sparkling and flitting at dusk. I am headed out to the woods! Bless you all…
Stunning pictures – beautiful words.
Dana of zona pellucida commented on my blog that you are one of her “elevators.”
I had to drop in to see why….now I know. 🙂
Hello I nominated you for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award! Claim it here http://kiramorrescloset.wordpress.com/2012/05/25/very-inspiring-blogger-award/
Thank you again, everyone! Wishing you all a very Happy Memorial Day weekend filled with nature’s beauty and simple Presence.
ahh. that hit the spot for me–also chewing on thoughts of what is fleeting and what endures…
Such beautiful words as always, Kathy. Thanks again for the reminder to be present in the moment. It has been one of those beautiful spring weekends when I have been doing my very best to do just that.
Thank you again everyone! Hope you are all enjoying this weekend even if you do or don’t have anything to say. 🙂
Such a lovely sense of peace. I feel touched by grace and filled with gratitude as I read your thoughts and words today.
….though for a minute I thought it was going to take more than grace for WP to let me comment on this lovely post. But finally, success 🙂
What? Was WordPress acting up? Maybe it thought no one else should have anything left to say either. tee hee! Glad you enjoyed the peace here…and hope you didn’t get stressed when the Universe conspired against your comment, oh no. 🙂
Silence is habit-forming you know 😉
That dear little hummingbird. I wonder if it was taking a moment to just… breathe.
Your photos of pine, cedar and tamarack (hackmatack?) are beautiful.
Silence is habit-forming and most lovely, indeed. We call them tamarack up here. Still wishing everyone much space and room to breathe…