"The blessing of the morning light to you,
may it find you even in your invisible
appearances, may you be seen to have risen
from some other place you know and have known
in the darkness and that that carries all you need.

May you see what is hidden in you
as a place of hospitality and shadowed shelter,
may what is hidden in you become your gift to give,

may you hold that shadow to the light
and the silence of that shelter to the word of the light,
may you join every previous disappearance
with this new appearance, this new morning,

this being seen again, new and newly alive.

"Blessing of the morning light" by David Whyte

Profound visions lie beneath the fabric of November light, hidden to one’s “eye”. Appearing to me as a sense, a deepening, and then as a joining of rhythms to previous quiet places.

The rhythms sing a song to the stars, who in turn respond in their contemplation of Earth with celestial music of their own, gifting us with the circle created.

Some days, when the fog rolls in, covering the ground with deeper mysteries, when memories drift by like wisps on fog tendrils, and keep moving onward, appearances shift into visions of what may be, the breath of possibility.

Some days, when the snow falls, blanketing the landscape, blanketing the previous summer's toils and outbursts, the quiet arrives with relief. The snow-bearing gifts come with a crisp and simple invitation to open to the greater silences, to explore what’s hidden, here.

Today, the song is of silence. Today the appearance is of stillness. Today the silence holds a deep ripening. The more I listen, the deeper I sink.

Winter companions sing confidently this morning, as they flit from branch to feeder and back, covering the ground with more shells of time.
Blankets upon blankets deepening the days, like woolen sweaters upon warm skin, offering comforting inviting covers to crawl under and into.

This invitation to listen to the land, to the visions here, opens a curious quiet doorway. One with potency, fullness and stillness. One that stretches me to remember to hold witness, to hear the songs as they linger, to honor who has come before and then, in turn, sink even deeper under the covers of this November. Dreaming the potent possible, dreaming the conversations with the cosmos.

The Winter will come ~
The Winter will bring the winds that roar as the ocean tides who crash on the solid rock; the winds that bluster and grow with force, mingle and laugh in freedom of expression, and move freely joyfully, through the forests of graceful hemlocks, tall pines and bare bones of hardwood trees.
This beautiful Winter will come,
and the conversations will continue.

Thank you to all of you; thank you for helping me to birth this post; thank you for being you and sharing your songs of you and your lands.

So much love, Namaste

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The sensation of today comes to me as soft. Soft and gentle.

These words describe the quality in the day.

The wind feels like a gentle sleepy puppy

The sounds feels soft as murmurs in my dreams

The atmosphere, as gentle as the flutter of wings on my skin.

No compass calls out to follow

No philosophy needs pursuing

No thought demands answering

Only breath.

Very, Very quiet

One might say, "all feels still, or silent," but the day is neither. A tide of quiet, a momentum of softness feels closer to the experience . The moment is as quiet as snow landing on snow, as breath on the wind, as quiet as a wonder in the sky, or moonlight through a cloud.

The day does have movement: Birds wander in and over to the feeder and shrubs with various calls of hello, uplifting sounds offered among true friends.

Whispers run through the trees in flocks;
Comfortable slow-paced musings from and on the nature of living;
Casual correspondence between deep friends;
One can lean into today and feel the cozy plush of the atmosphere, Comings and goings on the wings of deep healing

Gentle, ticklish, whispery, soft, and companionable.

I hear the words,
from whom, I do not know ~
"a song of revelation."

Perhaps a portent of time to come:
Guests that provide a song of songs
A song of the soul
a Song that reveals deeply, truly and gently.

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My Operating Manual suggests ~

Create in the vortex, speak in the chaos, dabble with that potion,
explore that note, say the unknown, all in the name of birthing anew.
Bring all of me into this void, and speak from this place, Showing the messy and the true, me.
CA

• ~ •

"through the pain - I saw and felt a profound beauty surrounding me 
beauty imbued with love flowing through every facet of this bewildering creation 

so now – when asked about love  
I feel I have gathered some wisdom 
for love is “a many splendored thing” 
limited only by our imagination " by William Waterway

Imagine tumbling down a hill, like a child, rolling around and around, over leaves recently fallen from the trees above, fearless of what might be at the bottom of this long hill, rolling, giddy with joy.

In a world in which everything could be conceived as having life and sentience ~ fields, stones, grass, vapors, spirits, perhaps even memories of loved ones long past~ then it seems only a small leap of faith to then know that even death is a friendly sentient visitor on the continuum of life. A flow, not a halt. An expression of the exuberance of eternity. When the corn in the field is cut, and the geese arrive to glean, there is beauty in this give and take. I feel the field rejoicing in the new expression of existence.

My thoughts muse on these observations this season. I ask myself, when the rains fall, the sun lowers, and the earth moves to silence, is life less exuberantly experiencing itself? Changes and endings, move life forward into spirals of evolution and ever new expressions of beauty. Life is ending and beginning and cycling in a beautiful dance that is a fractal of infinity.

All in the process of reinventing itself

And the truth is,
no matter how wise these words sound in my head, my heart feels heavy.
I feel the deep quiet as a sadness. I feel absence as loss; and emptiness, at least initially, feels as a breakdown and death.

The mornings are quieter, the bones of the trees are showing through their Autumn skin, the pace is sleepier. The sense of Nature as growth subdued.
Fewer birds, slower pace, more quiet, spiraling inward.
In truth, the lack of sound, the emptiness allows for other feelings to arise. Feelings that are not comfortable. Feelings like ~ what if I won't hear any songs, ever again? What if I have nothing to say? Or worse, if there is no one to hear? What if my voice will not keep the tune of life? Won't rhyme, won't ring true? What if silence lies and embalms all I have known? How will I spend this one an precious life then?

Long practice teaches me that this discomfort is an invitation. An invitation for an exciting journey of peering into the caves and shadows of this pain. I remind myself that peering into the dark is the best way through, indeed the only way through the pain, the fear, the death. So I sit. I feel. I pray.

But, but... But Oh! I so love the noise, the song, the dance, the laughter and exuberance. I love Sunshine through speakers.

Nevertheless, I peek.
I peek furtively into that scary endless pit of unknown, the fear and darkness, the feeling of obsolescence, the faceless void.
And there, I spy a spark of creation. I spy .... me. Just me.
Me, at the end of one story of the moon, and in the beginning of another.
And in that spark of truth, there is enough light to see a glimmer of a trail through. In the shadows, there is a path of beauty in sharing my truth, my voice and my song. That was the spark and is enough. I offer that gift to the Flow of creation.

So, since I take my cues from the trees that have shed their skin, I, like them, stand tall, in my true colors of gold, red and orange.
I let my hair down. I speak, even if it sounds like a croak, I show my dress, even if they are rags, I speak what I hear as true.
My song, my breath. My life.

And the cosmos gave me a gift in return:
Even now, as the sun lowers in our northern sky, and beech leaves brown, there is a glow of in the trees. And beauty in the bareness of authenticity.
And, tonight, as I come home, after working on this piece, the dark is falling along the edges of the forest. And to my surprise, I hear a sound. One I thought was done for now, gone with the frostiness of this season.
A song of life ~ I hear crickets harmonizing and trilling, singing their gift to creation.

This song feels like heaven to me. One song more. Once more. With life.
I leave my door open for the night, to listen, and revel in this many splendored thing.
Only my dark can show me my song, my light, my voice, my song.

What shining thread shimmers in the darkness from the future, to you, calling you forward.... ?

•~•

Black bird singing in the dead of night,
Take these broken wings and learn to fly
All your life,
You were only waiting for this moment to arise

Blackbird singing in the dead of night
Take these sunken eyes and learn to see
All your life,
You were only waiting for this moment to be free

Blackbird fly, blackbird fly
Into the light of a dark black night

You were only waiting for this moment to arise

I wrote this piece over a 24 hour period with little editing. It seemed as though the topic, so raw itself demanded a raw product as well.

I started it before the eclipse and sat with the discomfort of it not finished. Then, the rest emerged, when I spied the beauty of sharing from the authentic unknown that I was experiencing.

I hope you enjoyed it. So much love to you all. ♥️🌑

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Golden leaf falling week has arrived. The unleaving of the trees. The deep mystery of surrender.

The golden forest appears to have decided that this color is to be the theme for the year; I can imagine the trees conspiring last winter, planning to overawe us with the glow of gold. Beeches and Birches, Poplars and Maples, Hazelnut and Witchhazel glow in the gloaming with yellows. This year, every where I look, golden leaves wave and swirl, showering us in grace.

And to think that the leaves, who have been busily pursuing the works of greening all summer have hidden this secret behind the veil of chlorophyll. I am so glad they let us in on this secret, before the big release of their summer work. Before the mighty winds pull the many-hued friends off their branches and down to the decomposing duff below.

On some Autumn days, the swirling golden leaves lifts my spirits to wonder and joy, when I feel eager to join the performance, to see what textured tableau may be around the corner, eager to participate in the joy and beauty and connection with every step.

Then there are days,
though,
when even though the children may laugh while raking the leaves into piles, and the grey clouds contrast the beauty of the colors,
when I feel lost.

I feel the loss of the leaves as a parting of friends. I feel the finality of the browning colors. I feel the changing hues reminding me of the very temporal nature of life ~ mine, yours, nature's and the Earth's herself. A bounty perceived moments earlier, can inexplicably become like compost drifting through my fingers. When the unleaving becomes the leaving.

I was pondering such extremes when a friend sent me the poem called Lost.
Maybe you have heard it read by Pádraig Ó Tuama? on Poetry Unbound? Maybe this is the first time you have heard it. I would be eager to hear what you hear when he reads. Feel free to comment below.
When I listened, I heard the voice of the forest speaking to me, saying,

Do Stand still.
Do Stand still long enough to find yourself Here.
I have made Here around you. Here, where the center unfolds endlessly, easefully, around you, into waves of love from a center that knows kiself.
Stand still and notice, listen. Then you may find more than the feelings about your feelings.
And in that moment, you will feel connection. The connection.

And I felt the mystery within the connection to life. I felt the gift of one sentient being offering a hand to another on this path..
I felt the Deep Ecology of when we feel the connection to our place and to the earth's cycles. When we can dance with the center, and then let it all go.

~ let me be part of this temporal cycle of life,
~ let me be a part of the growing and dying,
~ let me give myself away to become part of the nutrients of this soil for new life
~even these words, let them be recycled and become compost for you ~


".....Remember me.
in stories - not the first time we met, not the last,

a time in between, our moment here is small.
I am too - a worldly thing among wordly things-

one part per seven billion. Make me smaller still.
Repurpose my body. Mix me with soil and seed,

compost for a sapling, make my remains useful,
wondrous. Let me bloom and recede, grow,

and decay. Let me be lovely
yet temporal, like memories, like mahogany."

(From Gloria Mundi, by Michael Kleber-Diggs, in Worldly Things)

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Lady Fall peeks out from behind the edges of the trees now. Illusive, formless Mist lies low in the valleys; the light refracts long angles in the fields; white-laced clouds edge the horizon; squash ripens in the fields; the dear frogs wend their hopeful way to their paradise of mud. I walk paths between the mountain and valley.

In all this, Lady Fall reveals herself slowly, treading lightly this year, courting us with glimpses and sips of her coming glory. Growth and decay lie side by side. Vibrancy and mistiness, red and green, breath and form bow and dance with each other.

I feel comforted when any of these perceptions of fluid beauty enter my awareness. In these moments of color in motion, I feel her smiling and waving to me.

In return, I smile too.
I welcome her into my home tonight with a bouquet of late blooming asters, zinnias, and goldenrod. A bouquet of summer gifts that offer last minute warmth and nectar to all. I gather these blooms, as the rising dusk falls across my path, as the music of the day changes to gentle whispers from the breezes whispering of the ever presence of love. "Remember love, Remember hope. Remember Summer, Remember Now."

The sun and I will rest earlier and earlier now. Our eyes turn to the inner stars of the night.

I publish this post, on the Fall Equinox in the North. This year, the recalibration coincides with a new moon (in two days.) This balancing point, offers us both an opportunity to find inner balance and an opportunity to dream into being a new kind of balance; to notice the refractions of light in our field, as well as to notice how we perceive them. And from there, to create of the dark of the void, the place from which all creation begins. To breath form into color.

"May the light shine upon your hearts
May the road that you walk, guide you home
May the light in your heart shine as bright as the stars
And may the song that you sing never end. "
Unknown

After a few weeks of drought, rains arrived. I wish to send the scent and feel of the gentle cooling mist on my face and arms to all of you. I am wishing you could feeling the relief on the Earth and her limbs of trees as well, while watching the drips from leaves and grass to the grateful grateful ground. The smell is enough to know the gratitude of the Earth. The scent of life and gratitude rises from the soil in vapors of deep richness. Microbes in process of decay and creation. Microbes traveling below the surface of the skin, altering our perceptions to allow for new growth and new creative paths.

In my prayers and heart, I imagine sending this verdant cooling relief to all who are in heat too intense for words. I offer it for those who are suffering from the intensity, or burdened and seeking the solace of green. Perhaps the following photo montage, with signs of the changing of seasons, and with reflections on the fragility and strength of nature in ki's many hues, can create a spiraling pathway of cooling relief for all places on the map where we yearn for this tender care.

"If galaxies were made to worship, so will I" O. Berry

Namaste, Blessings, and so much love.

The thrush song softens these days. The crickets' beat reverberate in the air, the movement of the sun lowers in the sky, and red tips paint the edges of Maple trees.

The sound of quiet in the forest is loud, as some of the flying friends have moved south, taking their sweet songs with them. Others friends prepare for the same. Soon silence will fall at twilight. I know from other years that this moment of missing and sadness is transient. But sometimes the ache feels very deep. We in the forest simply rejoice in the sweetness of their songs.

I listen to help me transition with the change of sound, the change of light, and the change of air... Soon, we, the forest and I, will indeed marvel at other wonders. Soon, the longer nights will turn our eyes and ears inward, to tend to our own inner songs. Until then, I intend to honor this time of transition in any way I can.

Often I linger longer in evenings to listen to the night sounds when the day turns to dusk. I notice the changing tides of the sky as seen in the colors of the dawn and dusk. I notice the changing quality of light. I notice the birds that linger in the gardens. I notice the flurry of bees catching up on their day's harvest.

During this transition, I made a discovery. For those who remember an earlier post on the hummingbird families, ( Reverence of Nectar) this is an update.

In the deluges of last summer, I wondered if the decrease of sun and increase of rain, affected the sugar content in the flowers, and if some change there resulted in the hummingbirds' increase of aggression. During that time their squeaks became higher pitched. The whirrings more frightening. Their posturing against all visitors more threatening.

Out of curiosity, I decided to try an experiment after a rain storm last week ~ I added a random amount of extra raw sugar to the feeders. Sugar straight from my cupboard into their cup. An ingredient that I might have used to add sweetness to my dessert, or someone may have chosen to add to their morning tea. And sure enough, the extra sugar seems to have done the trick. The small birds return to deeper calmness ~ they spend more time drinking in the delights and less time fighting with their neighbors. A little extra sweetness seems to have gone a long way to restoring the peace and calm of the garden. The experiment appears to be helping the garden individuals co-mingle and thrive.

More pleasure and peace. Less arguments and belligerence. All in all, more satisfying.

If only we all could find such an equally simple medicine.

If a little bit of sweetness goes a long way to creating a peaceful community among the fauna here, what might that heart medicine be for us humans? How might I increase the sweetness in my life and community? How might a little metaphorical sugar help to smooth over the stress during times of transition?

Maybe just knowing that it can be simple. Simple as breathing in the nectar present on our plate of life. Breathing into the the heart allowing heart medicine to thrive and sing. Maybe all it takes is believing and then breathing that in.

When these birds also rise to fly to their southern homes, I will watch them in my heart, wish them good health and safe travels. I will look up in expectation and delight to hear their song when they return come Spring. Until then, I will fill my heart with sweetness, light, song and breath.

"Deep night, Day light
Round we go again....

Follow your heart and you can't go wrong.
Trust your voice, Sing you song, Find your light and let it out."

~ Autumn Skye and Ryan Herr

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"I had believed
That if I was (sic) to become a pearl, I would no longer be messy." ~ Catja Wilson from We'Moon 2022

Just a little more effort, they taught us, would surely provide better results. A little more cleanliness would improve any space, and what’s more would reflect an eradication of the the inner cobwebs as well. Less clutter would create more peace.

Truth be told, over and over, I found these accepted adages just haven’t worked that way in action. At least not in my life. I find that the gift of just a little bit of chaos offers unexpected joy and the spice of life. The arrival of some chaos inspires genius and opportunity. In the disruption to status quo blessings of the unknown and untrodden arrive and carve paths into the everyday. In the wake of chaos, light and lightheartedness can sneak in through the doorway of surprise to the rooms of our hearts.

Earlier, in the Spring, in great enthusiasm, I planted an over-abundance of winter squash. I was using old seed and unsure of the viability of these seeds in my hand. Therefore, I cast hundreds of seeds. And as the loving faeries would have it, all of the seeds grew strong and fast. Blessed abundance! So many plants growing in a tiny space! My goodness. I gave away squash seedlings to nearly everyone as often as I could.

Still, I could not give them all away, and I left more seedlings than is "advised” in the allotted plots.

So, I cooed over them; I invited them to "do your best and make elbow room for yourselves to become robust plants." And now, to my delight (and surprise), they all obliged.

Despite my fears of failure, they grow strong and abundant. They offer me a reminder and hope for abundance in the midst of the interweavings of tangled vines.
Now, mind you the butternut is reaching over into the path toward the yurt; the delicata is where I thought the butternut would flourish; the zucchinis are overrun with buttercup. I don't mind. I applaud their resilience and belief in themselves. I applaud their determination and thirst for life. I applaud their art.

Perversely, despite knowing these gifts, with the arrival of August, I find myself with a desire to tidy, organize, clear out, exhume, and compost. I find myself attempting to carve tidy beds of order out of the increasing sense of overwhelm. I feel the urge to attempt to tame all these wild imperfections in my world. oh my….

I find myself craving to contain this untameable wildness even though I Know that a little bit of chaos has and will continue to allow for the creative solutions to peek through. Remembering all this, I slow my enthusiasm to purge and scour. I pause to reflect, how much of this activity is cleaning? And how much is an attempt to clear out perception of my own imperfections, my own inner untidiness, and my wild?
I wonder will the process be worth it if I miss the tiny pearls? The pearls of self-sown St John's wort, cleome, borage and insight. These are precious gems indeed.

Out of the disruption to my garden plans, came twists and turns that resolved itself into a surprise in abundance.' (I give a nod and offer gratitude to the patron saint of chaotic abundance. She has worked wonders here.)

Life with sparkling light and dark tunnels, has pulled me into unknown eddies, then rewarded me with the unexpected pools of delight, rainbows and sunsets. My fears turned into adventures.
And we all have had storms that have not felt so fun in their process. Yet, eventually, we discover they blow in new seeds for thought, new seeds for growth, and new opportunities for the persons we can become.

So, in this moment, I welcome the storm of the surprises and the unplanned. I welcome the winds to stir up the dust and clean the the cobwebs from my mind and heart, and the cobweb trails that would leave me blind. I welcome the twists and turns that bring in the strange and ne'er before seen bird of paradise, I welcome those that bring the rain and can clean the channels of love in my heart, washing the mirror clear. And I smile, knowing that "sooner or later the sand will get in" to this shell of mine and it will works its miracle. What may have been once perceived as a mistake offers me the gift of life.

I will be wildly imperfect ~ the one chasing the sunset across the sky, the night sprite splashing noisily in the evening tides, Awakening the currents of our hearts. I will be the messy sand that lands in your shell. Smiling at the pearls we will become.
♥️🙏🏼

I have started a muse on the Venus Muse page of what might be the energies of this August and the influx of energies from the stars. If interested, here is the link https://inlightofthetrees.com/venus-muse/

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- "The mother tree sends transmissions through the fungal web to all the young ones. She nurtures the trees with food and water, she teaches them to respond to friend and foe, she helps them adapt to an ever changing environment.
She is essential in "wiring" the trees for fitness."

A community ~ 'wired" for reciprocity, care, wisdom, and health. How wondrous to imagine such intricacies and interweaving.

I step onto this earth today. In awe at the possible information flying around beneath my feet

Step, pause, Step again, pause.

I read this recommendation in a newsletter ~
"The practice this week is a walking meditation,
barefoot, in nature.
Stand with your bare feet planted, take a few deep cleansing breaths,
bring your undivided attention into the 'souls' of your feet." Inhale, step, exhale step... ( C Clemmer)

As soon as I read this, I know this is what I want to try ~ To practice breathing deeply into and from every step, to feel the breath moving through the "souls" of my feet, in order to feel the connection to the Earth and to the greater web of support. In order to better participate in the community that thrives around me, to sense this web with every step of my walk. I want to be a conscious part of this web.

Step, breathe, step again, breathe deeply and then step again,
I attempt to focus my attention this morning, into the earth, hoping to create my own patterns and rhythm of listening, feeling, breathing, walking and receiving...

Ahhh, I did try....
I lasted 15 seconds before my questing mind traveled to other creative endeavors; the thoughts caught themselves on the bank of flowers in front of me, and then the thoughts noticed how that tableau looked or didn't look, and then these thoughts flitted to the bee balm patch, and how the bee balm, in exuberant health finds itself outside of their original bed and traveling along the path to who knows what destination (traveling and threading through the soil, like the mycelium itself,) and then, the thoughts wondered to what else I might do on this sunny day? and how my travels may support me or the earth, and so on... Oh, my...I realized how far afield I had traveled and stopped the walking practice, for now.
I encourage myself, I will practice this again later.

I Will still my Self later this day. I will focus my inner sense towards the transmissions circulating actively beneath my feet. I will practice when the sun is lower, and when the pause of the day helps facilitate an inner pause in my mind. This practice entices me.

I wish to try again, because I yearn to sense this intricate connection in the forest; And hope to sense the wise, sentient, nurturing Mother tree. I imagine her like a saint meditating in the center of the forest. I wish to meet, greet, and learn from her wisdom; to receive her guidance for my life, guidance that that would help me flow with the cycles of change in my life.

I wonder, as much as I would like to feel tapped into this interspecies web of care, wisdom and generosity that supports both individuals and the community to flourish and thrive, will I be able to actually sense it through my feet?

Am I "wired", or can I be re-wired for that matter, to receive the information, the wisdom, guidance, and support she spreads throughout the forest. Information that can inform my heart and guide my intuition.

Will my feet 'hear' the wisdom traveling along in the neurochemical impulses?

Can I join in to this community of trees around me and participate in their weaving?
How to listen deeply enough that I may feel, interpret, and then participate in this reciprocal web of life traveling with news, love and support....
I'd like to try. It seems like a good practice.

Later, in the day, I do try again, and this time, as I breathe, I last longer, paying attention to the connection to the Earth.
And, I do sense a trail. I sense an impulse, and a warmth. It encourages me to try again. And, Maybe with practice, the pulse will feel stronger, the message of care, clearer.

So I will continue this practice of connecting to the to the web, and see where this path leads. And maybe I will sense the great Mother tree, supporting us all with her wisdom and guidance, teaching us to thrive as members of a flourishing community, and how to walk in Wellness through the cycles of life and death.

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A perfumed carpet drifts along in the air tonight, following unseen eddies of light in motion, wafting to my doorway, to me and to the beyond.

One quality inherent in the month of July, is one of scent. In July, I pause often to smell the air, sense the aromas that surround me. The presence of scent has become a traveling companion joining me on wandering paths this July. Pausing to smell, leads me to pausing to feel the air, and sense presence in a given moment, to see the way the light plays, and to hear what the wind tunes.

This companion could be the scent of many different things: the smell of night and her noises, the fields, the roads, forest and sky. The scent of cooking and outdoor grilling, of picnics and sugar and animals. Of wet dogs up close, smelling my face, while I pray that their clever quick tongues stop short of exploring the curiosity before them, 'oh, please, only a little quick flick,' they seem to beg telepathically ~ oh so tempting to an olfactory-centered being ~ like the quick flick of the tongue from the snake in my garden, attempting to better estimate, examine and understand the surroundings. These efforts to smell deeper afford all of us the chance to be just a little closer to the mysteries we crave, to inhale the inexplicable that has captured our attention, to revel in the sense of something larger than we can grasp, this mystery that scent has somehow hinted at, and air has encapsulated in holographic integrity.

The perfumed wind arrives as an invitation to feel and take notice of this magic present in her hands, this pause, invites breathing in deeply, and sensing the wonder in the gift that has arrived, and noticing what wraps around us.

Dogs and snakes probably understand better than we humans do, this wonder: The mystery of the "Adoration of Scent." Or the adoration of the 'Sainted Scent.' They may better revel in how smells and taste revolve around each other endlessly, and balance each other to perfection. They appear to find many opportunities to relish in this ambrosia of scent, not wanting to ever pass it by or lose the chance to experience this... this... this inexhaustible mystery.

More scents that make me stop in my track and drink deeply include the smell of rose petals landing on whipped cream, the scent of field flowers rising in the heat of the sun, the smell of water greeting me on the path to the river, the perfume of hay-scented fern inviting me to venture farther to the top of the sunlit hill, the ripening of colorful juicy fruit, the petrichor lingering in the afternoon, after a thunderstorm has brought in coolness.

All these experiences of the inexplicable come with July.

Tonight, as the crescent moon sinks low into the west, a little after sunset, the intoxicating rich scent of the recently opened milkweed flowers rises into the night air, drifts toward me on a palpable carpet, arriving at the doorway of my senses, then drifts up and over me, like a large and exotic bird on a voyage to distant lands. This perfume takes me tonight in the carpet of her hands; she invites me to these lands, invites me to experience these new magical vistas. She leads me to a land of ancient beings where perfume can and does transform one into a different density of light, sound, and time. Where the power of scent alone allows the divine to sneak in, capture our attention and make room for laughter, breath and love.

All this, all this mysterious and unfathomable arrives in the night air.

How can something so strong and sweet live so far in the north? How can the air feel so dense with scent that I imagine, I could reach out a hand to stroke it? I pause to lift my face in an attempt to fathom the depths of this moment. I drink it in. As I do, I hear the night sounds that also carry easily on this warm night air. The sound of conversations between close trees, exchanges that maybe would be private by the light of day, sound more audible at night. The tete-a-tete's carry tonight in the wind's arms, as though I hear the leaning over of balcony railings, the sharing of the news of the day. There is companionable comfort in these sounds as one story leads to another, and laughter in one quarter stirs teetering appreciation elsewhere in the forest night. This is the gentle music of the forest community on a July evening.

Woven in an around this music, lingers the intoxicating perfume of milkweed. Its presence surrounding us, opening channels to the deeper waters, connecting me to you, me to all space and place. This breathing carpet of scent brings me where we are always connected, and always engaged in a divine conversation. I land here tonight with you.