Friday, May 11, 2012

Springtime Turns Our Fancy

My first drawing with
MyBrushes iPhone app
 When spring comes
to the northeastern corner of Pennsylvania, we find ourselves recalling springs past and dreaming of lying in the sun (with hat and sunscreen of course) in a month or two. The first sign of spring I saw this year were the leaves of the Star Flower plants in the woods, and then two weeks ago I saw a pristine white flower amid the leaves. Last week there were more. Before spring began to emerge up here at just under 2,000 feet, I contented myself with drawing from memory and from life around me with my new iPhone app, MyBrushes. This is such fun to use!

A recent walk through the woods to get to the lake revealed the violets are out once again. Their rich, purple hue reaches deep within me to evoke a kind of joy. A metaphysical healer I knew as a child maintained that purple is the color of healing. It has been a favorite of mine throughout my life. In fact, my Sweet 16 birthday cake was a chocolate hemisphere with icing violets and their leaves from the Farmer's Market in LA.
<>                        Los Angeles Farmers Market

Common Blue Violet
Viola sororia

I also saw lovely clusters of delicate Bluets in the
lawn in a road median. They are short plants with
flowers in varying shades of blue, some nearly white.
Houstonia caerulea

Trientalis borealis

And then at last we turn towards baseball at this time of year, having endured the first month of the season with all its injuries to emerge now five games above .500, which for the New York Mets is pretty good!
New York Mets batting helmet
Let's Go Mets!
(MyBrushes creation by me)

Friday, April 13, 2012

Spring Comes to the Plateau

Crow by Sonnische

Crows were here before we were, long before the house was built, before the road was paved, before General John Sullivan drove the Iroquois from the Delaware Valley and this plateau and up into Canada.

Meditating today it came to me to draw a crow with my new iPhone app MyBrushes and use it to illustrate a new blog post.

Crows are so smart, canny and curious. They stride like men with hands clasped behind their backs when I cast stale bread out back, a lookout peering at me from perch up high in pine or elm, then calling to the crew of crows who all descend.

Our friends, corvis brachyrhinos, can live for 20 years or more. Crow expert J. Crow relates an account of Tata, a crow who as a fledgling was injured and could not fly, and was taken in by a family in New York and eventually being given to another when that family could no longer care for him. It is reported that he lived to be 59 years of age.

I find a sadness within when I think how man treats our animal brethren. The Buddha said,

Not one or two but all the beings - men, women, animals, birds, trees, rocks. All the beings in the world. One should create such a determination that 'I will lead them all into nirvana.'
And the Buddha also said,
Meditate. Live purely. Be quiet. Do your work with mastery. Like the moon, come out from behind the clouds! Shine.