Sunday, June 5, 2016

LABYRINTH

I visited on a grey morning when the hemlocks
were finally showing their new growth,
and the mosquitoes were hungry. 
The forest was quiet except for
the song of a wood thrush and
the whine of mosquitoes about my head.
Labyrinths are not mazes.
They are meant to clarify, not confuse.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

HUMMINGBIRDS

Although hummingbirds have been sighted as far away as Nova Scotia, our feeder hasn't had a visitor yet this year.  The photo was taken on Tuesday when the midcoast was surprised by a fast moving snow storm.

Monday, February 15, 2016

RED SQUIRREL

In the fading light of a winter's afternoon this little guy was feeding atop his midden, ignoring me as I snowshoed by.
John Muir understood the Eastern red squirrel to be closely allied with his beloved Douglas squirrel, who he said, "Nature has made a master forester...committing most of her conifer crops to his paws...probably over 50% of all the cones ripened on the Sierra are cut off and handled by the Douglas alone...he is the squirrel of squirrels...undiseased as a sunbeam...getting into the most impossible situations without a sense of danger...he is without exception the wildest animal I ever saw. "
"I cannot begin to tell how much he has cheered my lonely wanderings during all the years I have been pursuing my studies in these glorious wilds; or how much unmistakable humanity I have found in him."

(Quotes from "The Wilderness World of John Muir,"ed., Edwin Way Teale, Mariner Books, 2001.)

Sunday, February 14, 2016

GENEROSITY ZONE

The people who live here keep a tiny library they call a Generosity Zone.  It sits atop a post that's located, as is their attractive house, only feet away from a busy road heavy with traffic.  Library visitors can read a notice that says, "We love the idea of sharing books with each other; giving and returning books."
However, drivers are too concerned about negotiating the downhill curves ahead to notice what's being offered, and there isn't very much foot traffic either.  So the tiny library rarely has any patrons, but continues to stand in the Maine winter for an admirable belief.  

Saturday, December 26, 2015

JOHN MUIR ON NATIONAL PARKS

"Any fool can destroy trees.  They cannot run away; and even if they could they would still be destroyed, chased and hunted down as long as fun or a dollar could be got out of their bark hides, branching horns, or magnificent bole backbones.  Few who fell trees plant them; nor would planting avail much toward getting back anything like the noble primeval forests.  During a man's life only saplings can be grown, in the place of the old trees, tens of centuries old, that have been destroyed."
"It took more than three thousand years to make some of the trees in these Western woods, trees that are still standing in perfect strength and beauty, waving and singing in the mighty forests of the Sierra.  Through all the wonderful, eventful centuries since Christ's time, and long before that, God has cared for these trees saved them from drought, diseases, avalanches, and a thousand straining, leveling tempests and floods, but he cannot save them from fools, only Uncle Sam can do that." (Our National Parks, 1901)