Whispers in the Meadow

April 8, 2010
A hound barks, a raven cries, that is what I hear. A sweet clover, a fragrant flower that is what I smell. What I see . . . a droplet of dew falling from a violet petal, and a camouflaged hare, which thinks that it’s hiding cleverly. What I feel . . . a gentle breeze brushing against my cheeks, and the warmth of the sun bathing my flesh with heat. . . . But what is it that I taste? I taste the sweetness of love, which comforts all, which binds friends and strengthens families, but I also taste the bitterness of hate, which destroys and consumes everything that it touches. It is like a wildfire, for it easy to start but hard to stop.

As I sit in this meadow, I see and feel many things. They are stories and lessons that nature can teach us if we listen. The chattering squirrel has perfected the art of balancing both work and play. The old oak has wisdom beyond his years. He teaches patience, for he waits three seasons before he can finally sleep, and the silent pond is a sly mentor, for the scum that browns the water reveals to us that when we lose sight of what’s important, it takes a storm to give us a clear sight to what’s around us.

Sometimes the smallest of things can be the best teachers. The buzzing bee is not alone for she survives each day because of teamwork. The creeping termite proves that when we allow ourselves to hurt others, we destroy the world around us, and the humble praying mantis unveils that we are blessed if we are in constant devotion to God.

The melodies of birds gift us with songs that we can learn from as well. The mocking bird’s voice exposes that people should not hide who they are, but to let everyone know that they are not afraid to be different. For most birds have only one song, but the mocking bird has many; just as people belong to more than one group in life and shouldn’t be afraid to embrace it. However, this advice should be used with caution, for the squawks of crows is a warning of bad company, which shouldn’t be ignored, and the morning dove, with its sweet coo, suggests that we should use each day to the fullest. Time is not something to waste, nor can someone get it back once it has passed.

The forces of weather are powerful tutors; they are ancient hermits of this world. The wispy wind represents that things do not have to be seen to exist. The blazing sun, which gives us warmth and light, is a gift, but if it is used wrong, it burns with an unforgiving wrath, and the cotton ball clouds speak as well. Though they look soft and fluffy, they uncover by their watery touch that things are not always how they appear.

But for me, the hardest lesson to learn is that of the hardy turtle: being able to adapt to change. For I am a creature of habit and I abhor and fight tooth and nail against the metamorphoses of time. That is my battle, what is yours? For nature has many lessons to teach us, all we have to do is listen.

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