The Rose’s Tale
heavy hands raised high
cupping the eternal, the
life within life
I think there is an awful lack of wonder in the world today.
Majestic forests have been cut down to make room for crops and cattle. Previously empty fields that once invited wandering are now fenced to prevent trespassers. Mountains once unexplored now offer established trails and warning signs for hikers. Scientific advances, psychology, medical knowledge, religion, and art have been refined, defined, and redefined so that it seems there is very little left in the world to discover.
In the face of all that, it is nature that reminds me to wonder: the seeds the flowers drop to rebirth themselves after they are gone, the energy of forests that reclaim our landscaping, the audacity of roses spreading their scent through parking lots. My natural world invites me to exchange certainties and to-do lists for mysteries that won’t be defined.
I look at the sky and remember how to breathe, watch the way the light edits every object it encounters. It is wonder-ful to realize that when I pick a flower, I hold “life within life” in my hand.
In April, I prompted readers to share a different perspective, a bigger picture, and the responses prompted me to bring May’s prompt a bit closer:
Through her descriptive poem, Isabelle gave a tree its face, its future, its grief. My own photographic answer to the prompt got lost in a carpet of fallen mandarin blossoms.
This month, let’s stop to wonder over the little things, the details in nature that might not fit our schedule or our situations or our to-do list, but that give us a moment to hear our own breath. Let’s look for something in nature that can draw us back to wonder, something undefined, whatever reminds us that we are not all we think we are.
Use your camera, or your phone (the photo above is an iPhone image, edited in Lightroom), or an SLR (single lens reflex camera), or even a point-and-shoot camera to focus in on one small thing in nature.
To focus on details with an SLR, you can use a macro lens or app, or set your regular lens on the lowest f-stop possible: f 1.2, f 1.4, f 1.6, f 1.8, or even f 2.0. These lower f-stop settings will blur the background and allow the detail you’re photographing to take center stage.
WRITE A POEM
If you’re using words and writing a poem for this prompt, try using a haiku form to bring the same focus. I love how this type of poetry uses only a few words to encourage a long pause.
Once you make your photo or poem, post it on Instagram, on your blog, on Pinterest, or on a public Facebook post, and please share the link with us at Tweetspeak Poetry in the comment box.
Be sure to post your submission by Friday, May 24. I will be collecting a few favorites to feature next month!