In my end-of-day wanderings through the park, I often think of Andrew Marvell’s amazing 17th century “Baby, let’s get it on!” poem, “To His Coy Mistress.” Not that I’m thinking of a person, but rather of the underlying theme of mortality. We each of us have a limited time on this earth, so let us carpe the diem and do some worthwhile things. For me, that worthwhile thing is photography and connecting with people. Wait, that’s two worthwhile things! And I get to do them at the same time! Two birds, one camera! Whoah!
Those birds today were a great egret striding through the shallow waters of the Steinberg savanna with a weeping fish in his beak (I do solemnly affirm it was crying “help me, somebody help me!”), and a black crowned night heron patiently scanning the waters by the boardwalk with the intent of gulping down a cousin of the first fish.
But, before I got there, I wondered as I wandered out under the sky about life, death and the perpetual rebirth of spring. Not particularly original thoughts, I know, so I was happy to have them interrupted when I spied Kelly and Jamar fishing near the Columbus bridge. Jamar, at five years old, is becoming quite the proficient, having caught several bluegill already in the short time he and his dad had been perched on that particular rock. From across the water one of the two nearby nesting Canada geese (there is one at each end of their tiny island) looked on in unconcern.
Just beyond the fishermen I entered a glade filled with wild sweet william, dead nettle (which is everywhere in the park), heal all, Virginia bluebells and dwarf larkspur (at least that’s what they looked like to my non-expert eye). I sat on the damp earth and reveled in the beauty and quiet around me, While across the narrow stream from me, toward Circle lake, cyclists, runners, bird watchers and your run-of-the-mill gawkers and passersby, passed by without an inkling of what they might find by venturing slightly, ever so slightly, off the beaten path. None of them seemed to notice the great egret fishing or the night heron stalking his dinner, red eyes glowing with ravenous intent.
But to find, we must first seek, and to see, we must first look. Not everyone is interested in looking, but at my back I always hear Time’s wingèd chariot hurrying near.
Let us roll all our strength and all
Our sweetness up into one ball,
And tear our pleasures with rough strife
Through the iron gates of life:
Thus, though we cannot make our sun
Stand still, yet we will make him run.
#ForestPark365 #AndrewMarvell #BlueFlowers #BlackCrownedNightHeron #Fishing