Sunday, August 28, 2005

Looking For

Where, what, could it be ?

I look up into spiraling green.

An accident of digital optics makes this ailanthus' late summer ascent into an electric-blue petitioning of heaven. I would like such a blue nimbus. Are there practices one can do for the attainment of such a thing ?

I look down. The path, as usual, is littered.

In classic black-and-white, ants swarm over a frosting-encrusted cake packet. What good fortune they have encountered ! How sweet life is !

At eye level I find drama. Life-and-death.

A wasp struggles to free itself from a spider web. One foot is stuck in gluey, elastic silk. It hurls itself forward over and over. The tenacious tether will not give.

Anthropomorphizing, heartsick, I watch.

I can't help myself. I put the camera down, pick up a twig, brace the leaf and saw. A frenzied vibration -- the furious buzz of survival -- travels up the stick into my fingers. It is startling as as electric shock.

Finally, it is free.

It remains motionless on the leaf as if stunned. It is probably dying. I walk away. What have I done ?

I look ahead.

New milkweed -- low,second growth after the field's recent mowing -- wears a carapace of yellow. I'd seen this before, last year, and concluded it was a fungal blight. I crouch and look. The blight is moving. Wiggling. Waving tiny black appendages.

So it's a nursery, then.

I remember a picture I'd taken a few days prior --

-- two perfect campions, blooming fresh among others already gone to seed. The green and white blousy flowers reminded me of bonnets, or leg-o-mutton sleeves. Of youth and beauty and innocence. Of times gone by. Of courtship. Of being adored.

Later, elsewhere, falling to my knees in shady pine woods,

I found what I was looking for.

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