Friday, March 27, 2009

Everything has a life span

My wonderful flowers, now dry and dead. It always seems so unfair to me that flowers last such a short time. I know it's relative to my sense of time. They last just exactly the right span in their time line.

They are always a reminder that I shouldn't be too busy to stop and contemplate the wonder that is nature. And I have thoroughly enjoyed having this bulb bloom, especially at this time in my life.

Behind the flower husk is looking south again. But with about 12" of snow which we desperately needed. We had gotten about 1/3" of moisture so far this year and the hills are scary dry. Even the wild horehound was dying - it's a tough mustang of a plant that spreads like crazy and has the most annoying sticker seedpods.

It usually makes it through winter as an evergreen but in my never ending task of rooting it out of at least some of our land, I've been digging out mostly dry sticks. I don't trust them not to rehydrate and burst into a mad burst of growth, hence the digging out those dry sticks. I have a box that I try to fill a couple of times a week and dump into the dumpster (on the left in the picture). I'd like to compost it, but the stems seem to never decompose and the compost has to be almost roasted to kill the seeds.

We have "PeeperView" up in the studio! We got 18 Aracana chicks a couple of days ago. The little balls of fluff are endlessly funny to watch. We've got them in the usual horse trough with a light, water, and feeder. They'll live in there for a month or so, I sort of forget how long. Long enough so they get really annoyed with being in there. We'll move them down into the chicken coop (small brown building in the picture) eventually and let the few old hens that survived the foxes teach them the routine.

I tried to get a couple of bandy hens for Napoleon, our bandy rooster. He needs some girl friends and the Aracana hens are about twice his size so they are having none of his nonsense, thank you very much! He gets crazy sometimes and takes a run at them. There is this explosion of feathers as he hits and bounces off and everyone sort of wobbles away from the collision. It's very funny to watch. But the feedstore didn't have any bandies, just other full sized hens.

I don't know if you ever watched the Highlander series either in movie or television. The Immortals lasted forever until their heads were cut off. The main character was something like 400 years old. When I think of things like life spans, I often think of the span of these characters. I think about how short the life of Emma was, how my amaryllis lasted only a couple of weeks, how our life and death is so short as to be insignificant to the stars. I also think about making/scrounging up 3 meals a day for 400 years and it makes me glad that I am not an Immortal. It is immeasurably sad to me that I have outlived some of my family and friends and pets at this point. I missed them terribly.

I also have a clear sense that it is important to exit the stage for the next generation. I love that scene at the end of Lion in Winter (the movie) where King Richard shouts "Let's live Forever" throwing his arms open wide and laughing uproariously. The sad thing is he only lives for a few more months after that, IRRC. When I turned 50, I felt my hands on the reins of my life loosen and become less tense. I hope that I continue to live long and prosper (as I wish that for all who are good and just), but I also glimpsed that to have a finite time on the earth is a good and proper thing.

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