Wednesday, May 8, 2013

The Height of Cherry Blossom Beauty

My writing spot at our NYC apartment is the dining table beside the window, looking down 27 floors.  Plenty high for me, considering that my knees start shaking at heights greater than a step stool.  Today I'm blogging from a cruising altitude of 36,000 feet, at a window seat, no less.  The view as we fly over square patches of land, in who-knows-what state, is tempting -  in a queasy kind of way. But with the width of the country to cross in the next few hours, I need a long-term writing distraction.

San Francisco is my final destination to attend our daughter-in-law, Kate's, doctoral graduation from The Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley.  A proud and monumental accomplishment, to be sure!

In the days leading up to the trip, my list of Shoulds grew increasingly vocal, if not downright pushy.
"You should wash."
"You should clean."
"You should pack."
"You should run errands."
Should . . . Should . . . Should!

"But I don't want to," I answered.  "Look at the sun pouring through the windows.  It's 65 degrees outside. 
                   Trees are leafing.  Flowers are blooming.  Ice cream carts are waiting."

To appease the Shoulds I ticked a few things off the list, but the Want-Tos, just as determined and much more computer savvy, drew my attention to the message on the Brooklyn Botanic Garden's website. . .

                                       "Cherry Blossoms At Peak !"

   That was it -- the tipping point.  Enough Shoulds!  The Want-Tos, who often feel neglected, joined me as we joyfully tripped out the door.

Every direction I looked after entering the Garden was a photograph.  From my camera's perspective, I tried to focus the expansive beauty into intimate close-ups.


All my attempts to add words as accompaniment fall pitifully short and unnecessary.  

Meandering through the photos, perhaps you can discover your own words - or not - choosing simply to be with the beauty.  

 Or, do as I do, and borrow from Mary Oliver. . .

...The Singular and Cheerful life
of any flower
in anyone's garden
or any still unowned field --

if there are any --
catches me
by the heart, 
by its color,

by its obedience
to the holiest of laws:
be alive
until you are not.

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