Kindling Neighborly Connections between People and Nature.

Thursday, April 16, 2020

Wildflowers at Pinafore Run (Tioga County, PA 4/16/2020)

Time and again, like a magnet, I'm drawn back to the wild spaces of the Pine Creek Gorge. There were a handful of wild neighbors with whom I made the acquaintance yesterday along the Pine Creek Rail Trail just a couple miles south of Darling Run Access Area. I longed to return to them again today. Our early Springtime wildflowers are wonderful expressions of Divine Creativity; blanketing the forest floor with all the colors of the rainbow. The saunterer should take care not to trample these delicate living treasures which cannot be said to belong to anyone but enrich the lives of all who pass by them.

The diversity and abundance of so many unique and beautiful wild neighbors, to me, begs the question, is it possible to be blessed so lavishly that the gift is taken for granted, under-appreciated, and disregarded as nothing too special? say that, its no big deal because its just the way things are. But the way things are in this northern hardwood forest is a special gift indeed! In addition, as much as I appreciate it these insects and birds who reside here likely do even more!

Pausing for a moment to appreciate a yellow-belled sapsucker systematically harvesting the sweet flow of a sugar maple, a common sight here in mid- April, I thought to myself, one does not have to know all there is to know about a particular field of study to engage in wildlife identification. Part of the joy of sauntering in any wild space is the experience of making the acquaintance with new neighbors, and getting to know old neighbors better. This is a discipline for the novice as well as the professional, that, thank God, never ends.

My attention captured by the call of a flock of crows, I fixed my gaze high above the waters of Pine Creek where a raven is mobbed by crows over flowing waters between steep canyon walls while an eagle ascends spiraling heavenward on broad wings. It is so good to be here today.

Upon arriving at the confluence of Pine Creek and Pinafore Run I made my way about 50 yards off the trail. Pinafore run was flowing strongly; water turning white where it cascades over around and between the boulders that fill this ravine. Next to these cold flowing waters, I crouched among the brown leaves and green stems for a better look at those wild neighbors who I came here to see.

Red trillium
Trillium, a vibrant pop of red with leaves and petals three springs forth from the brown decaying oak leaves of yesteryear. You are a bold stroke of The Artist's brush upon the forest floor and in my heart. Thank you.

sharp-lobed hepatica
Dutchman's breeches. To the one with the dangling pantaloons that are the colors of fried eggs; so unique and entertaining is your presence. The sense of character you contribute to this creek-side community is both elegant and comedic. I entertain my thoughts by pondering, I wonder where the fairy went who lost his britches. Thank you.
Greetings to you, sharp-lobed hepatica, the one with fuzzy stems, pointy-lobed leaves, and petals of varied pastel tones; your happy blooms that quiver in the gentle breeze inspire in my heart thankfulness for you and praise to the Spirit Divine who made us all. Thank you.

blue cohosh
Blue cohosh with purple stem, purple leaves, purple petals; tall and slender in comparison to the breeches and hepatica, you add dimension to this kaleidoscope of colors on the forest floor. Thank you.

To all my wild neighbors who've welcomed me here, for whom I am deeply grateful, thank you.

1 comment:

  1. “I think it pisses God off if you walk by the color purple in a field somewhere and don't notice it. People think pleasing God is all God cares about. But any fool living in the world can see it always trying to please us back.”
    ― Alice Walker, The Color Purple