Tuesday, September 10, 2013

A sense of Summer

photo of dragonfly on a plant
Welcome. Thanks for the visit. Can you see the dragonfly in the left center of the picture? They're very challenging to photograph. I don't know how some of the photographers who specialize in dragonflies do it. I've had "a thing" for this creature most of my adult life. Have you ever dreamed you were flying, not in a plane, but like a bird, or a dragonfly? I remember dreams like that from my childhood. As I got older I used to enjoy watching dragonfly's flights while I was fly fishing for bluegills and sunfish at Indian Head Pond in Hanover, MA. The rank smell of water, reeds, and muck, or the ok-a-li of a blackbird, often brings back pleasant memories of quiet evenings after work playing catch, and release, with poppers and pan fish. Sometimes, a largemouth bass would be unaccountably tempted to engulf the morsel of a bluegill popper, and I'd have my hands, and wrists, and elbows, and arms full for a few minutes. Another thing that satisfies me about dragonflies is that they eat mosquitoes. I wish they also feasted on wood ticks, but that's life. Despite having a couple of guidebooks, I rarely get a close enough look to be able to identify specific species. It seemed to me that I didn't see as many dragonflies this year as in years past. And as we move more and more into Autumn, I see fewer and fewer dragonflies. Maybe next Summer, when they again helicopter over the back yard and nearby wetlands, I'll be more successful. We live in hope, don't we? I have discovered at least one fascinating web site that includes, among other things, a page on the Meaning of a Dragonfly and What it Symbolizes. And as we're talking about dragonflies and Summer's waning, here's a poem about Summer's end, dragonflies and some of the company they keep.

Redwing Blackbird

Feet firmly perch
thinnest stalks, reeds, bulrush.
Until all at once, they attend my
female form, streaked throat, brownness.

Three fly equidistant
around me, flashing.
Each, in turn, calls territorial
trills, beckons ok-a-li, ok-a-li!

Spreads his wings, extends
inner muscle quivering red
epaulet bands uniquely bolden.

Turn away each suitor,
mind myself my audience.
Select another to consider,
He in turn quiver thrills.

Leave for insects.
Perhaps one male follows.
Maybe a few brood of young,
line summertime.

Silver Maple samaras
wing wind, spread clusters
along with mine, renewing Prairie.

As summer closes, I leave
dragonflies, damselflies, butterflies,
mosquitoes, moths, spiders, crickets for

grain, see, Sunflower;
join thousands to flock Sky—
grackles, blackbirds, cowbirds,     starlings—
Swarming like distant smoke clouds, rising.
Thanks for listening. Come again when you can. Rants, raves and reflections served here daily.