Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘nature’

The camera lay around the photographer’s neck at the ready as he traversed the paved path through the cities park.  His sharp eyes had spotted nothing of interest thus far.  Once or twice he’d put the camera to his eye and snapped a picture just see if anything came to light once developed.  But, today, the subject matter along this path fell short of what he deemed worthy to capture along his daily hike.

He gazed up at the sky and wondered if rain would fall from roils of brooding grey clouds above him. Dismal, that is what the day was.  This park was dismal and empty as well – no subject matter or maybe; he was just bored of the same ol’, same ol’.

His mood was beginning to match the atmosphere – dark and foreboding, such a waste of his efforts thus far with his camera.  This path, a tried and true one, was a bust.  Perhaps if he were to deviate from this path and take the detour ahead toward the water’s edge, it would scare up something interesting to photograph.

He stepped on the narrow dirt trail and followed it as it wound downward toward the river’s edge ducking wayward branches and stepping over deadfall as hiked toward the water.  Not far in the distance, he could see an opening in the trail that opened to the river.  Not a great photo but he knelt and snapped a picture which depicted how opposites can sometimes enhance one another. It was a serene entrance guarded by what appeared to be atmospheric turbulence in the distance. It should have a sign posted that reads, “Enter at your own risk,” he thought crassly.

The disturbing and depressing inner revelation of his own mind surprised him. No matter, he shrugged.  Darkness can be corrected. Lightness and color could be added via filters which would enhance beauty where nature lacked it.  

He continued forward with renewed purpose, that is when he spotted a target worthy enough to freeze in time. 

If only he could capture the moment!

Quietly, he slid into position.  First kneeling and then adjusting himself into the prone position.

He reached for the camera and removed the lens cap while he stalked the target with his eyes. 

She belied beauty as she sat unaware of his presence on a felled tree, mesmerized by the lapping, flowing water at the river’s edge.

The frailty of the target in a moment of serene strength had him awe struck.  Her beauty glowed against the angry, brooding clouds in the back-ground and portrayed the mood which this picture would encapsulate.  It was perfect. She was beautiful.

He’d call this potential award winner, “Moody Blue.”  He could see this infamous picture framed in gold.

Slowly, deliberately, he moved the camera to his eye, first playing with the focus then readying his finger to snap the shot.  He could feel the excitement build; his heart pounded and his breath quickened as he fought to steady it in this moment where perfection lingered at his finger-tip.  It wouldn’t do to ruin this picture with a shaky hand. A photographer, like any good hunter, needs a steady hand to shoot its target – breath control is everything.  His breath eased slowly from his lips as his index finger hovered ready for action.

“Steady,” he breathed as a clap of thunder erupted above him and a wisp of wind drove a raindrop into his eye. Jerking in surprise, he snapped the shot.

When he opened his eyes again, his target had vanished as had the perfect moment in time.

Years later, the photographer admits to pulling out the discarded, wayward snap shot.  He says it still makes him feel moody and blue. Yet, he continues to wonder what would have happened if he’d had the courage to talk to the beauty on the river’s edge that day instead of trying to freeze her – unaware – in a moment of time.  

His only award from that day is in a still memory.  What might have been a picture perfect moment gilded in gold is now only something locked away in his personal memory bank for no other but him to admire.

And, ‘Moody Blue,’ that’s the depression he feels on days with roiling grey clouds devoid of a picturesque beauty. They remind him of the gloomy rain day when he missed a moment meant to be frozen in time only to re-live a harsh lesson from time to time – when you live your life through a lens, don’t blink or you’ll miss it.

 

Thank-you for following, reading, sharing and commentingThe Trefoil Muse

Read Full Post »

It is never late for work,

Its timing is perfect,

Always shining and warm,

It is beautiful when it rises,

And when it sets,

It is loved around the world,

Earths star;

The Sun.

Winter Solstice 2021

Read Full Post »

We have undergone seasonal changes on the prairie.  Snow finally fell to coat the land.  It was a welcomed sight.  The fall season has been mild this year – dry and windy without much moisture.  This has made life for the smaller prairie animals easier than in prior years as they are able to forage uninhibited by deep snow.

The jack rabbits have been extremely prolific.  There are dozens of them careening across the landscape camouflaged in their new winter apparel of white.  They move in large groups like snowballs with legs as they bound across the land imitating the whirling drifting swathes of snow.

Some of them like to race, zigging and zagging along the edge of the road at 35 mph.  They are flexible, their agility saving them more often than not from an untimely demise under vehicle tires. If they zig when they should zag, they become fodder for hungry scavengers happy for an easy meal.

The jack rabbits blend into the winter environment easily now that their coats have turned white.  It takes a keen set of eyes to spot them when they stand frozen and alert atop the snow covered horizon where they listen attentively for predators lying in wait for them.  Jack rabbits need to be aware of the dangers lurking about them.

Not all danger abounds on land.  Above, another creature has changed colors with the season.  It perches above proudly displaying its white plumage as its wise eyes scan the prairie to find a rabbit to bring home for lunch.

 

 

 

 

And so, the circle of life continues as the seasons change on the prairie.

Read Full Post »

She drifted on an endless tide.  Emotions lapped at her sides like waves.  Some passed her by believing her to be redundant.  Others saw her value and tried to bring her aboard.  She was very desirable, a streamline, timeless vision.  Her knotted, gnarly appearance only added to her mystic. Along with her intrigue, she held little bark. Truly, a quality piece, one that they could work with but her weight was camouflaged within her well hewn exterior and to their surprise, she was heavy.

They pulled, tugged, heaved and attempted to rope her in to no avail. (more…)

Read Full Post »

The world seems momentarily peaceful – the autumn gales have been horrendous.

My body is grateful for this temporary respite – a gentle wind is such a welcome change from the cold icy blasts that have beseeched the prairie lately. I exhale calmly. The windy onslaughts seem to be unleashed on the world when the urban inhabitants are uneasy – their angry fearful outbursts unbalance natural order with dissention.  It is not global warming that beseeches the land; it is heated rage or callous icy innuendos that extricate the gales.

I breathe in clean fresh air as I follow a curvy path that leads south.  It is the same direction the snow geese are following.  The sun hits their feathery bodies and they shine silver in the calm fall air above me.  I can clearly hear their calls as they fly above me in a familiar “V” pattern.  Each member of the flock has their view unimpeded.  All can see what lies ahead on their path.  There are some geese that are falling behind.  It is communicated to the leader.  The leader adjusts its pace so that the flock remains together but it is still moving too fast and the flock honks out their distain.

snow geese photo cbc.ca

(more…)

Read Full Post »

 

I am beyond the circle today, racing toward freedom.  “Oh, how I love to run.”

There is strength in my legs and courage in my heart.  My vision is keen.  I am galloping into uncharted territory but ancient wisdom within tells me I have traveled this path before.  I am not afraid.  With this knowledge, I strive forward gathering increased energy and speed.  The air on my face feels good.  It is cool and fresh.  My white mane and tail flow out behind me uninhibited.  I am breathing deeply, nostrils wide.  The inhalation of crisp translucent air has cleansed all senses.  My exhalations are mere puffs of white.  Purity has allowed my feet to float above the obstructions below so that I may glide along like wind.  All restrictions have been removed.  I have become a leader.  But, in my exuberance with the race toward freedom, I have forgotten my herd.  They have fallen behind. (more…)

Read Full Post »

“Go ahead, you can pet her.  It’s okay.”

Little Britches eyed his father suspiciously, even at the ripe old age of two; he’d mastered the art of discernment.

Little Britches’ father was his hero. Still, he wasn’t totally convinced that petting that little bunting cow at the edge of the deck sniffing lilacs was in his best interest.  Heck, the cows buddy, a young golden lab, knocked him over in exuberant body wriggling, tail wagging licking episodes – and, that farm dog wasn’t as big as the mini black cow with the white face they called Mable!

Little Britches shoved his hands deep into the pocket of his jeans and shifted his weight from one rubber boot to the other, his bright inquiring eyes peering up at his father from below his Blue Jays ball cap. He needed a tidbit more encouragement before attempting, “Mission: touch-the-cow!” (more…)

Read Full Post »

Man Eater – Chapter 3

By: J.V. Andrus

 

It was summer now and all was calm.  I was outside playing one evening when I spotted my run away pony, Judy.  With her head down, she stood quietly in the corral by the barn, stamping her small hooves and flicking her thick white tail back and forth in an attempt to fight off the hoards of black flies that bit at her small golden body.  Slowly, I walked towards the barn and nonchalantly swung the gate closed to trap Judy.  I turned to find myself cornered.

I was frozen to the spot.  Man Eater dove at me, white rimmed eyes full of hate and black ears flattened to the back of his head.  Grabbing me with his teeth, he flung me into the air.  The world exploded as I hit the ground and in half a daze, I crawled under the corral to safety.

Luckily for me, the jacket I had been wearing was my brother’s and being four sizes too big, I had slipped out the bottom.  I sat and watched in mute silence as Man Eater tore the jacket to shreds, then turned heel and headed for the hills.  I was soon to learn that this would only be the first of many attacks by the insane stallion. (more…)

Read Full Post »

Man Eater – Chapter 2

By: J.V. Andrus

I was only a small girl but I’ll never forget the first time I saw that wild horse.  He was crazy-mad and full of hate.

We stood still as Daddy and Frank brought him through the yard, fighting and screaming.  His nostrils were flared wide and red and his white rimmed eyes were full of hate.  His head and short mane were caked with blood and lather covered his huge black body.

The angry stallion fought the ropes that circled his neck and held him between the two other horses.  He dived at Daddy’s horse only to be brought up tight by Frank’s rope.  He turned and charged at Frank but was thrown backwards when Daddy’s rope pulled tight.  He was a mass of flying feet and catching one of the ropes in his teeth bit down on it with such fury that the rope snapped but, Frank was too fast and another rope whistled through the air and landed over his head.

I was sick.  I thought the poor horse would kill himself before he would stop fighting.  It took the men an hour to corral the crazy, mad fighting horse. (more…)

Read Full Post »

Gone But Not Forgotten

I have always been fascinated by the power of words to convey a message.  When I was young, my mother used to read us stories some of which were her own.  I loved those stories.

J.V. Andrus
Dec. 2, 1934 – Oct. 10, 1989

Sometimes, however, an artist’s work isn’t fully recognized or appreciated until after they are gone – the following story has never been published but, it needs to be. It is a story I have never been able to get out of my mind.

Written by my mother, J.V. Andrus, Man Eater is about a wild mustang captured in the Alberta Foothills before the majority of wild horses disappeared from the range.

Many people like to romanticize the good old days – truth is, times were hard back then and the bitter reality of that truth can be harsh. The story of this wild mustang is raw.  It’s real. It is a battle between a wild animal fighting for a territory being encroached upon by man. So, let’s take a step back into our not so distant history and enjoy my mother’s story of a wild stallion who roamed free in the foothills of Alberta in the 1939’s or 1940’s.

Proudly, I present:  Man Eater by J.V. Andrus.

The following is Chapter 1 of 3.

Man Eater

By: J.V. Andrus

When I was a little girl, my family lived on the CC Ranch southwest of Nanton.  The Ranch, situated on Willow Creek was silhouetted by the wild and beautiful Rocky Mountains.

The land was filled with bush and farther in towards the mountain was thick timber.  I remember that it was not uncommon to see bear, moose and deer on this land.  We knew that many wild horses made their home in the mountains although they were rarely seen.

My story is about a black stallion who gained the band of wild horses and who was snared in the mountains by my Dad and his best friend Frank.

I had only seen the wild horses a few times.  My Dad, who was foreman of the CC Ranch, said the wild horses were inbred.  They had large over-sized heads, crooked legs and big pie feet.  Some were very small.  The wild horses usually had long unshed hair and the older mares had matted manes and tails that hung to the ground.

They stayed high up in the mountains most of the year and grazed on the tender grass that grew along the timber line.  Their bands were very small.  The cold harsh winters and deep snow found the colts and weaker mares starving.  Some were pulled down by Timber wolves, some by another hungry predator. During these times, wild horses usually descended from the mountains into the foothills.

The ranchers hated the wild horses. (more…)

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »

%d bloggers like this: