All I’ve Got’s This Sunny Afternoon.

A dragonfly hovers above the birdbath, skimming in a flurry of silver and aquamarine. Such compact elegance. I’ve never researched it but to hover in midair like that must take a lot of effort. Those wings which turn gauzy with the sun must move at over a hundred beats a minute. The water churns slightly, as if a sigh has arisen from the depths of the garden and the dragonfly, startled, flies straight upward, pulled on a string. In under a minute he is lost in the sky.

A cockatoo flies into my neighbour’s mulberry tree, scattering fruit. The ground is stained dark purple-red. My neighbour will be furious. She scrubs her tiles with salt and lemon juice to keep the stains at bay. She cleans them at least three times a week. Sometimes the smell of salty lemon is so overpowering I have to go indoors. It is worse than peeling onions.

The cockatoo closes and opens one eye, winking. He is cheeky. The feathers below his neck are stained with mulberry juice. He holds the fruit with one foot while he nibbles with his beak, as dainty as if he is attending a garden party. His little tongue darts in and out, sucking out the sweetness. Every now and then he sings contentedly.

Two geckos bask in the sun, close as lovers. Their tails touch at the tips. It is a gecko first date. They look at one another and open their mouths as if to speak, then settle down onto the warm ground. They breath in synchronicity, heads leaning in together.

Three butterflies come. Small and white, playing follow the leader. They are ballerinas dressed in silk, so perfect I can hardly believe it. They pause on a bright orange hibiscus and for a moment their tutus are sprinkled with gold.

The clouds are stretched out, flossy and thick. I dream of a dress the colour of the sky, so remarkable it would make people turn and stare or stop for a second look. I would float a little in that dress, my imperfections forgotten.

If I was able to put the true meaning of a prayer into words then this sunny afternoon would be it. Wild, precious, vast, rising gracefully into night. I could be wrong but this sunny afternoon could be my own personal heaven. I wouldn’t mind living in a garden if it could always be like this.

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24 thoughts on “All I’ve Got’s This Sunny Afternoon.

  1. GYPSY – I love to sit in the local park and just wait to see what birds come around. Basking is a good way to describe it. Thanks for your very kind comment.

    ANGRY – awww, you are most welcome.

    PAISLEY – I grab moments of serenity whenever I can because usually it’s just rush, rush, rush.

    NINA – thanks so much for visiting. That is a real compliment coming from you. Your descriptions of the natural world are awesome!

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  2. You put a smile on my face every time I read your posts – I wasn’t have a great day, but when I read your post my mind just escaped into that sunny day and was visualizing a nice summer day!!! All I see now is snow and snow…can’t wait for warmer days! You are an amazing writer, if you ever publish a book I will be one of your loyal readers:)

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  3. Thank you for that, Selma. It flows with my recent exploration of how spirituality manifests itself in my life. I came to understand that nature (with a lower-case) “n” is central. It’s not the Grand Canyon that sends me, but rather the magical butterfly that lands on a flower. These are wonderful word choices that you have made.

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  4. He’s a fly. Buzz, buzz, batting against the window pane trying to escape. Silly fly, does he not realize that outside there is nothing for him? Nothing but snow and ice and a harsh, foodless world. It’s not like he can strap on skis and going winding about the country side. To escape is to die.

    Of course, to stay will also mean death.

    SPLAT!

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  5. TBALL – you have made my day by saying that. You are an absolute sweetie. Thank you!

    POET – wise words. Sometimes I need to remember the beautiful moments when the blackness hits.

    BEC – I am so glad you liked it!

    DAOINE – Wow. I am so touched. I don’t know what to say….

    CAROLINE – the manifestation of spirituality intrigues me too. Thank you for you very kind comments.

    TRAVELRAT – there is nothing better than sitting in the patio with a Long Island Iced Tea. Now that takes me back….

    GROOVY – you’re not snowed in are you, Groovy? If that fly weren’t such a horrible spreader of germs I would almost feel sorry for him.

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  6. CRAFTY GREEN – I have a thing for geckos. They are such sweet little creatures.

    ANTHONY – Good one. The neighbour definitely is a lifeform all its own. Hahaha.

    MISS BRITT – I suddenly realised as I was writing this that it was freezing in some other parts of the world. It’s funny, I miss the real cold and snow. I’d love to experience a proper winter again.

    MICHAEL – I am sure you are the consummate multi-tasker. It wouldn’t surprise me if you were also telling ‘Knock Knock’ jokes to Lucy and Ethel!

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  7. MELEAH – I am a big fan of dragonflies too and of Michael. I found him through you and am so grateful. He is a genuinely hilarious guy. Sometimes I laugh so hard when I read his blog my sides ache.

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  8. i demand the return of summer now — thanks for reminding us up above what is coming our way again. Your words are almost as good as being there…almost.

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  9. TR – sorry. I know it’s cold where you guys are. If it helps at all, I do miss the snow…..well, sometimes.

    JOSIE – great to hear from you. Will do.

    MS KAREN – I won’t tell if you won’t. (nod and a wink)

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