Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Birds, Bees and Butterflies

I am in a constant state of awe, from the moment I wake up until I finally fall asleep to the sweet scent of wisteria drifting through the room. Even with the doors and windows closed, the scent is so strong it flows through the house like a gentle breeze.

The flowers are alive. They hum and buzz as if singing their own song. I can hear them as I open the door. Swarms of large, black bumblebees with bodies like torpedoes dance between bouquets so thick they tumble and fall like water from the rooftop of our house, the sides of the trellis, the vines standing tall upon our front slope. I have never seen so many bees and wasps in one place, and the variety is astounding. I photographed a scarlet-striped wasp today as it walked across a leaf and when it turned to face me, all I could do was stare and marvel at its beauty.

I stood beneath the bulk of the wisteria this afternoon with flowers tumbling around me, listening and taking pictures. It is interesting to see such a large variety of creatures moving through the flower bouquets without conflict between them, knowing there is plenty to go around. The feeling of abundance must be thrilling for them this time of year when the other spring flowers that make Texas so famous are just beginning to bud.

The birds are hovering near the wisteria, as well, waiting for the opportunity to snatch up something tasty. The birds nesting between our driveway and back door fly into the forest and back to their nest every fifteen minutes--it is hard work feeding baby birds, particularly if you have four or five of them, but they do their job without complaint.

Yesterday, I photographed a yellow swallowtail as it drank from a wisteria flower. Its wings slowly closed then opened again, like the hand of a sleeping infant. Whenever I watch the gentle movements of a butterfly, or a dove with its eyes half closed as it bathes in the sun on a rock by the pond, or the hand of my grandchild stroking his mother's chest, I know that they are experiencing His grace, that they are feeling His blessing, that they are resting in the arms of God.

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