Friday, April 18, 2014

A Day at the Pond

Inch-long peeper frogs blow the Gabriel's Trumpet of spring. They're perched in wooded wetlands heralding the thaw exuberantly. I approach their cricket-like mating melodies through the darkness amidst a thousand soliloquies shouted with the ardor of adolescents at a rock festival. The revelers rise above a din that, as a bystander, I find hard to take.

On returning next morning I enter a quiet as profound as the noise of the night. The pond and the air are absolutely still. Yesterday's sunshine matches the mood by transitioning to cool mists. My senses decelerate.

Misty morning
With the nocturnal creatures withdrawn an alternate logic envelops the pond, restorative and protective. I appreciate the stillness as a dynamic pause rather than an absence, a necessary phase of non-action. The visible world waits and offers compensations.

Lichens and hemlock
 Lichens and mosses glow themselves into prominence on rocky surfaces. As the sponges of the terrestrial world they prosper when the diffused light and watery air of an "Irish day" make life on bare granite verdant and decorative. They lift the biological world into notice in a continuum of organisms from tiny to towering that both colonize and create niches.

A scamper away from the pond a crevice opens to subterranean recesses where salamanders lodge in domiciles that never freeze. I imagine myself in miniature spelunking through their caverns with a miner's lamp. A massive approaching amphibian shakes the ground and walls. I scatter distasteful repellants and stand aside. The repellants will biodegrade harmlessly in an hour, plenty of time to get myself back to the land of giants.

I emerge from underground and meander to the shore. Moisture condensing on an overhanging tree drops to the water, radiating ripples across the pond. I climb aboard a leaf to spin hilariously in the ripple surf, a final allowance of the mode in miniscule.

Elevated once again to manly stature I look down at the ripple patterns caroming through each other, playing with forest reflections on the surface of the pond like fluid glass bull's-eyes, like novelties metamorphosing into consciousness from dream states in our creative core that sustain new ventures in the realm of achievement. 

Silence muffles the edges of time. Submerged salamanders lower their respiration and breathe through their skins. A slow pulse disperses energy to the miracle of life.

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