This week my best hour was spent walking in the field with two small humans. We sang to alert the bears, we looked for turkey tracks, we did crazy wiggly dances, we counted the different types of grasses, we stood by the beehives for a long long time and were very very still.
And then, at the end of the path, the real highlight – we met this new little friend!
Dear Honeybees, LOOK at this little worm! The stretching, the exploring, the anchoring, the leaping, the yearning, the twisting and turning and finally making a new plan when the first one is just not the way to go. Isn’t it glorious?
Sometimes when you’re right there in it, it’s hard to tell. Is it time to stretch? time to anchor? time to leap? or maybe time to turn a different way altogether?
Take a minute – a single minute – and cheer this inchworm on as she (and we) figure it out.
* If you need the direct video link, here it is: https://youtu.be/TyKqMy3OrUk
* I might not have noticed this little one if I hadn’t seen a recent wormy image from Maria Popova of BrainPickings – how grateful I am for this influence!
Loyal Honeybee readers will know that I’ve been sharing my fascination with mycorrhizal networks for some time now. These wonders star in Peter Wohlleben’s terrific Hidden Life of Trees as well as in numerous publications we noted here about a year ago.
Lately, I’ve been trying to move past the brainy part of this fascination, into the less comfortable and more courageous heart of the matter. Would I be so fascinated with fungi if they were not so foreign to me, so forgotten?
If indeed a reconnection with the wisdom of nature is appealing, what if it were more than a read-in-a-book reconnection, one where I know what’s blooming and where the bears have been and when the sun will rise not because I’ve taken notes, but because I am so close to it all that I can’t not know it? How would that kind of knowing influence the rest of my life?
People and organizations that work on these deeper levels of reconnection make me terrifically uncomfortable, in the best and most provocative way, and that’s precisely why I’m trying to spend more time with them.*
Dear Honeybees, if something has piqued your interest, I hope that you dive way down into the roots, through the mind and into the spirit, to find all that there is to learn. Chances are, there are more wonders to be found in that tangled underground rooted space than we could ever imagine.
* One of these groups, TreeSisters, will be visiting in Boston this week – if you’d like to join me for a reception with them on July 13, please say the word. I would love to see you there!
My sister recently told me about a poetry contest called the Floral Games, which was referenced in a commencement address by poet Billy Collins (alas, no relation, though I would take my brother, father, and grandfather — Williams all — over any other Billy Collins around).
I finally had the chance to do a tiny bit more research on the Floral Games today. Turns out they have a long history, going back to the 1300’s (at least according to Wikipedia… like I said, a tiny bit of research).
The more modern form of the Floral Games, held in the Basque region during the mid-1800’s, offered three main prizes. The prize for the most patriotic poem was a sweet briar made of gold, and for the best religious poem a silver violet was awarded.
But the highest honor of all, for the greatest love poem, was an actual rose.
Isn’t that just lovely?
I was lucky to attend the terrific On Cue gathering in Boston this week, where poet Regie Gibson put forth the image of an archipelago — islands that appear to be separate, but that are really all connected, just below the surface.
It’s not a brand-new notion, but it is a powerful one. Here is John Donne’s version:
No man is an island entire of itself; every man
is a piece of the continent, a part of the main…any man’s death diminishes me,
because I am involved in mankind.
And therefore never send to know for whom
the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.
And here is Pitbull’s version:
When the going gets tough
the tough get going
One love, one life, one world
One fight, whole world, one night, one place
Sometimes each of us feels like an island. Sometimes we even wish for it, longing for independence and solitude.
But even at our most individual, we are an archipelago!