Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Opening My Eyes

I looked back in my journal today and saw that the very first entry was made on April 16, 2007. I remember that I was anxiously awaiting the chance to move into the Bean house at the first of May, and I celebrated by beginning with my first entry. The first thing that I thought to write down was the weather (sunny skies and temps in the 60's with slowing winds) because we'd just suffered a killing late frost; one that must have occurred around this date. "This year's freeze interrupted the redbud bloom, though dogwoods seemed to defiantly hold onto their blooms." And mention was made that a late freeze had also been suffered the year before. I'm so glad reading it now that I made the effort to write a year ago.

All winter long I wait for a day like this one to come again, as if the days of winter are somehow inferior. And then when spring arrives, the season begins to speed by with the impatience of a teenager. I stopped to think today that the mid-afternoon temperature was as perfect as any that I'll see again all year. And having noted that here, I'll stop to remember what I wrote today in the heat of an August morning.

My first quote was also recorded that day: "It's not what you look at that matters, it's what you see." Those words of Henry David Thoreau still strike me as worth writing in my journal today. It's a lesson that I think has been taught to me in part by the very act of journaling. And it reminds me that time is often wasted hurrying to the next sight, when so much can be learned by dallying over the sight we already have in front of us. And I'm reminded too that even when we must use the exotic Panda to stir the hearts of those who might contribute to our cause of nature, it's the ants under our own feet, the moths flying in our night sky, the trees in our neighbor's woodlot, or the invisible air that we breath that we should perhaps most concern ourselves with. I'm still learning to see every day, but at least I feel like my eyes are beginning to open.

1 comment:

Terrell Holder said...


You are too humble. While I can tell you are working to improve, you "see" way better than most. I understand what you mean about the grand little things all around us all the time. I saw a chipmunk today under some trees at 4th and Main in Louisville.