Monday, May 25, 2015

Secret Whisperings In Our Gardens

The Secret Garden movie I watched earlier replayed in my mind as I photographed flowers in my backyard. “If you look the right way, you can see that the whole world is a garden," the young heroine said in the story.

The music from the movie sent me adrift into mysterious realms.

If you look just the right way past the misty veil, you might catch glimpses of a multitude of realities.

Even the most fleeting spark of intuition or smudge of scientific study suggests nothing is quite as it appears to the human senses.

When a breeze whispers into the lobe of a leaf or a storm roars like an angry beast, it is clear there is much more to know about our garden home.

The true nature of existence and how it all began is the world's biggest secret, sprouting all sorts of theories.

I like how author Frances Hodgson Burnett focused on the wizardry of it when she brilliantly wrote:

"Sometimes since I've been in the garden I've looked up through the trees at the sky and I have had a strange feeling of being happy as if something was pushing and drawing in my chest and making me breathe fast. Magic is always pushing and drawing and making things out of nothing. Everything is made out of magic, leaves and trees, flowers and birds, badgers and foxes and squirrels and people. So it must be all around us. In this garden - in all the places.”

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Copyright by Penelope Puddlisms

Monday, May 4, 2015

The Art Of Never Being Penny-less

HAVE YOU ever gotten out of bed with a big yawn and a stretch and a niggling feeling there is something important you have forgotten about that needed your attention yesterday? Oh, yes … that gift for someone special that you still did not get. It is a dilemma we all have faced, including Penelope who is only six years old and penniless.

That is the start of the story accompanying another set of watercolour pencil drawings my daughter gave me several years ago for Mother's Day, complete with original font for the prose. I procrastinated a long time but finally produced an e-book version of it online for fun and to preserve the art. Penelope's Gift of Time: Because No One Can Fill Your Shoes is from a child's simple perspective while the motivation behind the theme is mine.

During my walks, I often see the very elderly or ill accompanied by uninterested strangers. Tiny tots are ignored by nannies and parents who are lost in their cellphone screens. The Penelope story is about discovering nature's true gifts and being fully engaged with someone near who deserves attention.

This is the second in what I expect to be a growing series featuring the Penelope Puddle character and her small sidekick umbrella that takes on a best-pal role. In fact, I have big plans to evolve the umbrella's "personality" in future. I just need a few more decades of time in which to do all that I want to do with the concept and art.

Although I no longer get them as gifts, I have a wealth of Penelope drawings tucked away to play with whenever I find the time. An upcoming visit with my daughter for Mother's Day will give me a chance to thank her again for providing me with an always welcoming friend that absorbs my imagination and never accusingly asks, "Where have you been? What took you so long?"

Postscript May 11, 2015

A soft light glowed through the glass at a restaurant we randomly walked into on Sunday for a Mother's Day brunch. When we were seated, I noticed a sign on the wall over my daughter's head that read, "I don't eat my friends."

The Heirloom Vegetarian served up a plate of food that turned out to be one of the tastiest meals I have eaten anywhere. The vinaigrette on the super fresh salad was laced with the perfect amount of tang and the creamy sauce, spiced with a bit of seaweed powder, melted beautifully over the mouth-watering nutty meat substitute. The exceptional flavours sweetened our conversation.

As the reflection on the window from the outside shows, the day was not cloudless. So I was amazed that the sky still cast a wonderful glow.

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Copyright by Penelope Puddlisms

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Within The Emerald Forest At Crescent Park

CRESCENT PARK is a 128-acre natural gem in South Surrey that we usually drive by without stopping on our way to Crescent Beach.

The forested parkland has two ponds, gurgling streams, multiple winding pathways as well as sport fields and playground equipment for kids. It is the time of year when a fresh burst of young leaves splatter against the sky like green paint on a never-ending ceiling.

In the parking lot, a sign tells visitors how to deal with coyotes that also like the park. Looking them in the eye and hollering should keep the creatures at bay we are told. I suspect my performance would make them howl with laughter.

I have never encountered a coyote there but have seen many pets at the park.

Although I see only dogs, ducks, small birds, squirrels and joggers along the trails, I do not feel confident visiting such a large lush gift of nature on my own. So I was glad when my husband recently wanted to walk there with me.

Tall cedars and mossy coverings infuse the park with an emerald green sheen. New shoots sprouting from deciduous trees add to the predominant colour, making the unexpected red tulips all the more eye-catching.

Memorial plaques are nestled by some trees. Each mentions the type of tree that was donated and offers brief words of inspiration. Beneath a scarlet oak (not pictured) donated on behalf of Muriel Truelove, (a woman with an exceptional name), are words by Bernard M. Baruch, “Be who you are. Say what you feel. Those who mind don’t matter. Those who matter don’t mind.”

In an unpredictable tumultuous world who would not be glad of a moment to do what a plaque by a tulip tree (not pictured) suggests, "Live among the flowers, dance with the petals, laugh in the sunshine, let love bloom."

I found baby bells blooming in the forest ...

and ancient hieroglyphs too buried in time to comprehend.

Have you left your footprints upon wooded trails and felt at one with all of existence? For some the forest is a temple with many shrines ...

and hidden passageways to secret treasure.

This post is dedicated to Earth Day on April 22nd. Learn more about it HERE.

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Copyright by Penelope Puddlisms