When I wrote the following blog, I lived alone. Or, I thought I lived alone. Each morning when I arose, I found that someone during the night had battered and deep-fried my throw pillows.
So, for the most part, I lived alone, in the park, near the 87 bus line, a mile from the gyro shop, in a utility shed behind the tennis courts with outdated carpet and a microwave that shorted out the baseball scoreboard each time I cooked a frozen pizza.
I earned my living by my own hands as my feet were collecting unemployment. I lived there two years and two months until something rent-controlled opened up. At present I am a sojourner in civil court, suing my landlord for subletting my pantry to a family of raccoons. Below are my notes during this time in solitude.
On Watching the Sunrise
Watching the sunrise over the horizon, I think, “How insignificant I am!” Walking past a traffic cone, I feel the same way.
As the sun’s rays break the darkness, I contemplate my mortality. What happens to my soul after I die? Will it get weekends off? Will I need to buy a new wardrobe? Does the afterlife have same-day delivery?
A bird sings. Squirrels scamper along the ground. A kayaker paddles by and asks me to wash his socks.
The Majestic Oak Tree
When I look up at an oak tree, the word “venerable” comes to mind. “Venerable” from the Latin venerabilis, meaning “worthy of respect or smoking brisket.”
Poets have described the mighty oak as “Rude, unbending, lusty” and “whose myriad leaves are loud” but never as “having high cholesterol.”
Gazing skyward at the mighty branches, I ponder the historical tragedies the revered tree has lived through-The American Revolution, The Civil War, Disco. Indeed, the branches creeping gracefully towards the heavens are most remarkable, with the possible exception of a deer singing “Stairway to Heaven” while break dancing.
Yes, the massive oak can survive war, drought and flood but even the hardy tree has its weaknesses. Oak wilt is a pernicious fungus, destroying the tree’s roots and threatening the species. Treating the lofty oak requires loose-fitting shoes and a visit to the podiatrist.
On a Flowing River
The movement of the river brings me to a meditative state. Is all existence suffering? Is there a gap between appearance and existence? If so, I definitely paid too much for my tires.
One of history’s great thinkers said, “You can never step in the same river twice.” A later philosopher refuted this declaration and the result was a very dull argument.
A wise Buddhist monk once told me, “If you put a plastic bag in the river, the bag follows the river, wherever the river takes it. Unless someone is doing community service.”
Gazing at the Morning Glory
The hypnotic, star-shaped beauty of the morning glory made me believe a woodchuck was trying to give me a scalp massage. The morning glory: symbol of love, unrequited love, forbidden love and the ball pit at fast food restaurant playgrounds. The flower blooms and dies within a single day, which usually means losing the remodeling deposit.
In the Victorian Era, the morning glory represented love, death and the grieving period between high tea and jazzercise. Morning glory vines were seen growing on gravestones, to express mourning, a shortened life and the hope of resurrection in time for high tea.
According to Chinese folklore, the morning glory is symbolic of restricted love.
Chien Niu was a heavenly tax auditor. Chih Neu was a CPA for the gods. While conducting an audit on God, Chien Niu and Chih Neu fell in love and overlooked God’s deduction for office supplies.
Enraged, God banished the lovers to work at Bloomingdales. Chien Niu worked in housewares on the third floor and Chih Neu in women’s hats on the second floor. A silver escalator separated them. Once a year, during the Thanksgiving sale when the morning glory bloomed, God allowed the lovers to cross paths on the escalator during break time.
Nature’s Give and Take
Walking through the forest, I tripped over a Volkswagen and fell upon the perplexing mushroom-eating fungus.
The mushroom eater attacks the host mushroom by covering it with a ghostly veil, which usually wins “Best Costume” at Halloween parties.
The mushroom eater is a parasitic fungus, depriving the host of nutrients and frequently asking the host to pay its phone bill. However, if the host fails to provide non-alcoholic drinks or adequate dance space, the mushroom eater will find a more suitable host.
The Magic of the Double Rainbow
As the rain slows to an ethereal mist, a double rainbow arches over the horizon. The showery prism inspires awe, wonder and the feeling my uncle Herschel will pawn my leftover Cobb salad.
Revered throughout the world’s cultures as a transformative symbol, each arc represents a harmonious duality. The first arc represents the material world while the second arc represents the realm of the dry cleaners.
The sight of the double rainbow signifies a divine awakening. After prayer and meditation, the spiritual realm will open doors for the pious, especially if they can palm a fifty or “know someone.”
Indeed, in the Bible, the rainbow acts as an agreement between God and Noah that He would never flood the earth again. “Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds…this is the sign of the covenant between me all life on earth. And don’t park the Ark on the street.”
2 thoughts on “My Nature Journal”
Wonderful post with the beauty of nature!
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Thank you so much and thanks for reading!
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