Life suspended between the boundaries
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Life suspended between the boundaries

I love that exact moment when a wild creature acknowledges my existence. They look at me, and for a moment time is suspended and one species recognizes the other. Trees, of course, are also aware of our being. Mere plants as well. Okay, then, what about the rocks. Do the rocks know I exist? Can they…

Floating, floating, floating
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Floating, floating, floating

I’ve always been a cloud fan, and my photo gallery is full of cloud pictures. This one is a favorite, because it reminds me of how fast time flies. It was about ten o’clock in the morning when this baby cloud popped up. One moment there was all blue sky and the next, there it…

Stairway to the stars
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Stairway to the stars

Whenever I go touring historical houses, I always head for the kitchen. There I will find where the real work was done, and where the folks that did it hung out. Although this Southern mansion had an elaborate, curving, walnut-carved balustrade in the front of the house, this simple staircase in back, divided for male and…

Dance like no one is watching
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Dance like no one is watching

I once borrowed a very expensive sports car and was cruising down the freeway when I was pulled over by the highway patrol. When I protested that I had been carefully driving under the speed limit, they cheerfully agreed. “We just wanted to see what one of those looks like up close. Have a nice…

Crafting the perfect family
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Crafting the perfect family

I visited a quilting show recently, with beautiful, painstakingly crafted bed covers hung on the walls. But among the more modest displays, I discovered these three individuals. It’s hard to craft a perfect family, but this genius sewer came close. The mother is singing, the father is smiling, and the infant is tucked in safe…

Cloud signals
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Cloud signals

Sometimes I trip over my own feet, because I am staring at the sky. This day, the clouds were giving some very clear signals. The background white ones were fair-weather clouds saying don’t worry, everything is fine. The lower, darker clouds, rapidly moving in, were saying, don’t believe those guys. You are in for some…

Book review: Seeking Enlightenment, Hat by Hat by Nevada Barr
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Book review: Seeking Enlightenment, Hat by Hat by Nevada Barr

Book Review: Seeking Enlightenment Hat by Hat by Nevada Barr Because I like both mysteries and nature writing, I’ve always been drawn to the books by Nevada Barr. Her work features strong women who go against the odds, and win. Her heroine, Anna Pidgeon, a park ranger, has been trapped in a desert sinkhole, underwater in…

Bubblegum flavored battle zones
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Bubblegum flavored battle zones

I spotted this old stable door on a recent walk. I wish I could have known the horse that lived here. I could tell a lot from the evidence left behind, though. Note the owner’s cement reinforced foundation, the reinforcing bolts on the lower edges of the stable door, the double lock on the middle, and…

Cover reveal: Silence in West Fork
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Cover reveal: Silence in West Fork

West Fork is one of my favorite places in the whole world. A tributary of Oak Creek Canyon in the Verde Valley of Arizona, this clear stream runs through ponderosa pine and fir trees. Ferns and yellow columbines carpet the ground, and golden eagles nest in its boundary red cliffs. And, for the inveterate mystery…

Perfect symmetry
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Perfect symmetry

Upside down, right side up, left to right, right to left. If you’ve ever noticed, we don’t often find (almost) perfect symmetry in nature. That’s why, when I found this vista, I was delighted. Symmetry creates a comforting predictability. Two by two, like the story of Madeleine living in the convent. Or Noah’s animals in the…