Reincarnation in the field

Sunflower Reincarnation
Sunflower Reincarnation

I passed by a field today that was covered with beautiful sunflowers last summer. I met the owner and she told me they only plant them every other year, this year they planted corn. But I thought I saw some on the edge growing in between wheat and wildflowers.

I stopped to take a closer look and as sure as birth and death there they were. They weren’t planted but must have come from last years stray seeds, for all practical purposes they were reincarnated.

So I asked myself if they were reincarnated, what were their plans for this summer? Were they going to try to be better flowers, were they going to do things differently this time, were they going to savor every minute they were alive and just be themselves?

And my self answered that it wanted more coffee. Then it answered that it didn’t matter because once again they would stand there and be beautiful for a while, and then die and start all over again.

The Buddha (allegedly) said: “Every morning we are born again. What we do today is what matters most.” So I took a few photos, got more coffee, and remembered the most important thing I’ve ever read by Charles Bukowski: “What matters most is how well you walk through the fire.” Yes.

Out of a compost heap, a sunflower blooms

First Sunflower
First Sunflower

So I’m driving around this morning thinking about Zeno’s Paradox of the tortoise and Achilles, when out of the corner of my eye I see the first sunflower of the season.

Back in April I discovered that from the withered tree, a flower does indeed bloom, but this was different, kinda-sorta. There, in a compost heap in front of an Amish barn was a single, beautiful four foot sunflower all alone smiling at the clouds.

I took several photos trying to find the best composition, but eventually decided to get up close and personal. What better way to celebrate the first day of summer than with an amazing flower growing up in the middle of dead grass and weeds?

Now if I can just find a tortoise to race that will give me a head start I can rest easy, once I win.

Yes Poppy

Pink Poppies
Pink Poppies

I was driving down to the lake yesterday when I saw a group of pink flowers in what was either a construction site or a dump. I pulled in to take a closer look when a guy in a pickup truck rolled down the gravel path in a cloud of dust and parked behind me.

He walked up to my window and asked if I had a problem. Maybe it was because I was parked in front of a locked gate with a huge private property sign, or maybe he was actually interested in my problems.

For some reason, rather than tell him I wanted to take photos of the flowers I told him I was checking my voicemail. That seemed to satisfy him and he left me with the poppies and several yellow finches that appreciate this kind of thing as much as I do.

Later I realized I could have said something witty like “The difficult problems in life always start off being simple,” by Lao Tzu. But I didn’t want to take a chance on pissing him off with all those flowers and birds waiting for me.

When the Student Is Ready the Teacher Will Appear

Water Lily and Dragonfly
Water Lily and Dragonfly

I was experimenting with my new Sony A6000 and ended up at a scout camp with a beautiful pond. I saw that the water lilies had started to bloom and rushed over to take a few photos.

They were only three or four feet from shore, but with my kit lens I just couldn’t get close enough. Then I heard a high pitched voice and realized it was the dragonfly hovering around the flower.

He said: “Get in the water you wimp!” I really didn’t want to take a chance on drowning my brand new camera but for some reason I listened. I rolled up my jeans, waded in and prayed the tripod wouldn’t sink into the mud.

After a while I figured I should quit while I was ahead, and got out when he spoke again. This time he said: “Now get your other camera, its better for close ups.” He was right and we both knew it, so I did.

I took about sixty more photos and was ready to call it a day when he started again. He rambled on about ISO, metering, composition and exposure and made some good points, but soon he started to sound really annoying in that whiny fly voice so I left.

Note: if you meet the teacher at the pond, think twice about blindly following his advice, especially if he’s a bug.

The Flowers Look like People at Last

Kim Kardashian Flower?
Kim Kardashian Flower?

Charles Bukowski wrote a book called the people look like flowers at last, but today it seemed that the flowers look like people at last.

Maybe it’s me, but I think that if you look closely at these beautiful, so far unidentified flowers, the one of the right looks like Kim Kardashian wearing a white skirt.

The flower on the left may resemble one of her sisters, but the last thing I need is a Kardashian tweeting that I’m body/flower shaming. I’m simply keeping up with the flora.

Wanting Things to be Different

Rain day
Rain day

Like everyone, I want things to be different than they are. Today I wanted it to be sunny and warm, and I wanted this flower to be sitting pretty wherever it came from.

I also want money, motorcycles, cars and houses. And I want to live forever, but that probably won’t happen.

Lao Tzu said: “Be content with what you have; rejoice in the way things are. When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you.”

Alrighty then, when that day comes I’ll go to the bank, pick up a new pickup (must be white) and hop on a 2017 Honda Africa Twin to look for a house on a lake. I just hope it won’t be raining.