This is the summer I feared fireflies were diminishing. Their numbers seemed on the decline. Suddenly mid-June they announced themselves as if to say, "Just because flowers, trees and people are speeding up doesn't mean we are yet. We are right on time."
And they were. They filled my yard and a few still do. I watch and joy fills me.
This is the summer we saw tens of thousands of bats in June at the Nickajack Lake's maternity cave thanks to winning a trip at January's Sandhill Crane Festival. Two TWRA representatives whose job is to keep tabs on Tennessee's bats took us along on their pontoon boat to the mouth of the cave at dusk. As the sun set and a full moon rose, bats quiettly streamed from the cave for forty minutes.
And I can't forget last weekend. Just last weekend, I counted two dozen swallowtails on the butterfly bushes Jerry planted two years ago. His vision was to create a butterfly garden. Mother Earth responded as one part of our yard overflowed for the first time in four years with Queen Ann's Lace, the flower so loved by swallowtails in their caterpillar stage.
Joy fills me and feels me. Joy brings a smile to my face. Joy is the energy expanding in my chest, stretching the skin beneath my breasts. When even I don't feel me, joy feels me reminding me of who I am.
Bats, butterflies and bugs may be departing for a season but within me they will never leave. They may be departing for reasons related to pesticides and the myriad of chemicals created in science labs, chemicals now flooding dear Earth. I so hope not yet if they are parting I can still say with gratitude and love that they will never depart my heart after this summer.
As I write this tears come to my eyes tears of joy, not sorrow for deep down inside I realize this is one reason I've had to go more slowly this summer and stay tuned in at a slower pace. Rather than rushing around, getting things done as I'm accustomed I've been forced to sit, be and see. Experiencing what's labeled as small in Nature will now always stay with me.
What have you experienced this summer that will bring you joy as the season shifts?
-Dawn! The Good News Muse 17 August 2012