I know for many of us here in the Northeast, there has been wondering whether spring would ever arrive. But of course it does and has been, slowly, beneath the threshold of our awareness, shoots pushing against the gradually softening earth, finally breaking through to the light. I find it humbling in being aware of how much I miss. That no matter how attentive I am, that even if I sat and observed a fern frond all day, I would miss the infinitesimal changes as it unfurled.
And so yesterday morning, I set out in search of the spring ephemeral wildflowers. Aptly named for their transitory nature and appearing between the last snow melt and full leaf out. At first glance, it appears not much is happening on the wooded slope where I first stop, but then, here and there, mayapple, bloodroot and crimson red trillium take center stage, standing in dramatic contrast to the quieter and more subdued tones of blue cohosh.
Kneeling on the forest floor surrounded by oaks and hemlocks, time seemed to slow as I became absorbed by the play of light and shadow, illuminating textures, accentuating the curve of a leaf or revealing some aspect previously unnoticed. At one spot, I came across a tiny red eft, a bright splash of orange traversing under and through the abundant leaf litter. In having just seen a newt in our pond, I couldn’t help wondering how the world looked to this little critter, who having shed his gills would be a land dweller for the next few years before returning again to the watery world. Moving slowly, the eft was very accommodating and I got some wonderful close-ups, one of which I’ve included below:
FLOWER NOTES: I encountered wildflowers in several places around my hometown of Ithaca, New York: Treman State Park, Mundy Wildflower Garden (at Cornell Plantations), and my backyard (I’ve included one cultivar … the green shoot of a Solomon’s Seal). In order of appearance, here is the species list: Blue Cohosh, Meadow Rue, Wake Robin, Toad Trillium, Christmas Fern, White Trillium, Bloodroot, White Trillium, Solomon’s Seal (cultivated variety), Rue Anemone, Wake Robin.
Gorgeous Siobhan. What a wonderful and tranquil escape.
Thank you Siobhan! I especially like the eft’s gold eye and orange elbow – I’ve seen efts many times but your close focus brings me into his world.
Thanks Ruth! Happy you enjoyed it. The eft’s eye is pretty incredible and as I was looking into it, I was curious as to how I appeared to our little friend.
That is simply LOVELY, Siobhan! And I especially like the wide-angle shot at the end, showing us the precious woodlands where this is all taking place.
Thanks so much Marie! I love that one too, I played around with the idea of including more but enjoyed how it comes up a little unexpectedly, given the multitude of close-ups.
Awesome. Thanks for the trilliums. Love love love your pics of the wildflowers. Thanks for a walk in the woods, but at my desk : )
Thanks so much Lynn for letting me know. Am happy to hear you enjoyed your walk!
This is exquisite! I loved seeing the Blue Cohosh flower in all its delicate detail.
I’m absolutely taken by how well this works … using still photos with pans and zooms to create a video-like effect. For plants, it works great, and allows the viewer to absorb the sheer beauty of a scene before a transition occurs.
Tremendous descriptive writing Siobhan! I am blind and therefore could not take in your visual work, but your narrative completely made up for it! Reading it, I felt as if I was right there with you and that I could see all the things you did.
Reading your words brings a smile to my face Nick! I am very moved by your thoughts and in hearing of your experience. And it is very helpful in planning future narratives. Thank you.
I love walking through the meadow with you. Great job!
Fascinating. The movement allows one to concentrate more easily and focus on the beauty of the plant.
I agree. Siobhan did a great job of it!
Hello Siobhan and Lang, I finally made it to your website. When this desert gets to me, I’ll turn to your wonderful, soothing sounds and sights and immerse myself for a few precious moments in your world. Thank you.