Having new eyes

barred shadows

In the hot Arizona summer, any point of shade is welcome. Here, the barred shadows represent a wooden arbor overhead, providing more an illusion of shade than actual shade itself.

But instead of looking for relief from the sun, perhaps I can appreciate the beauty of the precise latticework echoes and the way they transform once again when they hit the brick walk.

Layer upon layer the world reveals itself to us, when we pause to look closely.

The real voyage of discovery consists not of seeking
new landscapes, but in having new eyes.
~ Marcel Proust ~

Always looking for more

young skunk cabbage

If you look at what you have in life, you’ll always have more. If you look at what you don’t have in life, you’ll never have enough.
~ Oprah Winfrey

These young skunk cabbage were flourishing on a trail near the Museum of Northern Arizona one morning and I was struck by their vitality. There had been no rain and the ground was rocky and barren. Yet there they were.

What they had was enough: sun, air, a quiet place to grow.

I wonder if sometimes I am too focused on what I want and not enough on what I truly need to make life worthwhile.

Small things make all the difference

field daisies against lichenLife isn’t a matter of milestones, but of moments.
~Rose Kennedy

These ox-eye daisies found a home in the Coconino forest near Flagstaff, Arizona. No one had planted them, and the ground was poor and thin. Yet they thrived, moment to moment. If I went back there a year from now, a sister plant would have sprung up in their place. This was their spot, and the short mountain summer, their time to bloom.

Sometimes in my rush to accomplish good things, I forget to notice what is right under my nose. I miss the beauty that is there for the taking, if only I notice. This flower reminds me that I sometimes am too intent on the goal and forget the importance of the journey.