Tree Party


When the zephyr appears,

We flutter and sway,

A waltz in the wind,

An impassioned ballet.

If the squalls should arrive,

We’ll shake, and we’ll sing,

Let loose of the branch,

Square dance in a ring.

The birds will take part,

Building homes for the new,

Whistling with joy,

Loving chirps, or a coo.

It’s a party, my friend,

Nature offers with glee,

Come join, all are welcome,

Better yet… it is free!


The image is another recycled photo; our Ginkgo. That tree is huge, and it just keeps growing, and growing…

Anyway, I was working on it last night and this afternoon, and was tickled when I saw the Word of the Day Challenge: Zephyr. How fitting!

Not to bring up the elephant in the room, but my walking came to a halt—just for this week. In case anyone is curious. It’s been pretty hot, like in the high 90’s, so I took a little break. We put up a little pool in the backyard, to soak our feet in, and watching the birds play inspired the poem.

That’s about all for now. Peace & Love!
—Janet

Loquat Tree

Another Day in Paradise

If you look the right way, you can see that the whole world is a garden.

Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden

One of the things that I love the most about the Garden Art series is the fact that it’s limited to my backyard. Well, with the exception of my neighbor’s Flowering Pear that is.

There are so many cool things in our yard, but the truth is… I don’t go out there as often as I should. Been there, done that maybe? What I’m trying to say is that I—like many others—tend to take what I have for granted.

Things lose their appeal after a while.

To go a step further, I’m no real fan of our Loquat Tree. The fruit gets brown and a great deal of them end up on the ground. You can see squirrel bites in them, too. It needs to be topped, so it’s too tall and the branches rub against the cables that stretch across the sky.

I know, I know… I sound like a cranky old grumbler. That’s my point. This Garden Art series is forcing me to forget what I think or feel about the things that have been around me for what seems like forever… and to look at them in a whole new way.

That’s what makes this piece special to me. That little star of the show is just two inches in size. I see growth, regeneration and renewal in this shot. It wasn’t easy to see, I had to look for it.

I see tropical flair, beautiful colors, and glistening light… things I don’t normally notice. The backyard looks brand new!

I feel very blessed today. The sky is blue, the sun is shining, and it’s another beautiful day here in paradise!

Thank you for reading!

Enjoy your day… and may everything seem brand new!

Day’s End

Colors erupting,

Branches waltzing in the wind,

Welcoming the night.

—Janet

Haiku #2
Word of the Day Challenge: Waltzing

Carpe Noctem

I realized this evening that I stay up much later than I used to. I wanted to work on this image tonight because I just love the trees. The next thing I knew it was after midnight again! If you ask me, I think all of the lines from the leafless branches seem to make their own art. I love how nature does that; flaunts its beauty without shame, even in the most vulnerable and unexpected places.

I was never quite sure if the trees were even alive when I took the photograph, because as far as my eyes could see, it looked like sticks… upon sticks… upon sticks! Still, it looked beautiful to me. I think it has to do with growing up in the city. When all you really know of nature is what’s in your own backyard—or in the neighborhood park—glimpses of natural landscapes, untouched by man, create a sense of awe and wonder that’s truly unforgettable. I love that.

Anyway, the later it got, the more I thought about how I’m becoming a night owl again. I’ve always loved the night. Of course, I used to love the wild night life. Now… it’s my quiet time… when I can think without interruption. That’s when I decided that I needed to add the finishing touch. Something personal. A little night owl… hanging out with the trees… just like me.

Seize the Night!

It often seems to me that the night is much more alive and richly colored than the day.

Vincent van Gogh

Upside Down

Sometimes you have to let life turn you upside down so you can learn how to live right side up.

I’ve been having some weird feelings lately. I think I’d call it “lack of joy,” but at the same time I keep reminding myself to stay grateful. What I’m REALLY grateful for is the fact that I have the wherewithal to remind myself of that!

What I’ve been catching myself doing a lot lately is living everywhere but in the present, and I realized today that this is the reason my joy has slipped away. Believe it or not, I still have eleven weeks left in this semester and I’ve spent hours—if not days—trying to plan my schedule for spring. I even met with someone at the university I’ll be transferring to next year so that I could start planning ahead for those classes too!

I know it’s smart to have goals and plan ahead, that’s not the issue. For me, the problem occurs when—in making those plans—I lose sight of where I am right now. Similar to how some people go on “speed dates,” I find myself wanting to “speed learn.” Instead of looking forward to each new day and being grateful for what I GET to do, I start approaching each day as something I need to GET THROUGH. It’s like saying “I want to be there, not here.

Where’s the joy in that?!

So… I took some time to relax and let my brain recalibrate, and I went back to an old shot of our ginkgo tree. I wanted to create something that represented what’s been going on inside of me lately. I guess it’s sort of quiet and serene, with spurts of energy, moments of frustration and anxiety, and a touch of overthinking.

Oh, and it’s upside down.

Believe it or not that started as a mistake when I accidentally hit the rotate button. Not only did I think it look cooler from this new perspective, it’s what got me to thinking about my inclination to live in the future.

It was also a great reminder that sometimes mistakes aren’t actually mistakes; they’re just stepping stones to better places.

Life is good and God is great!
—Stay encouraged—