a feather a day for six years

a feather a day for six years

i probably see one feather on average for every walk i take. if that were true, and i had walked every day since the start of STILL blog, i would have amassed about 2000 feathers so far, which is not enough to completely feather any but the smallest songbirds. i would have to keep finding a feather a day for another 10-15 years in order to feather a raptor, and about another 60 years to clothe a swan. the wonder is not that i find a feather almost every day, but that we are not awash in them.

collection of found feathers

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what a black background does well

what a black background does well

i was reminded the other day that one of the reasons i wanted to switch to a black background for a while was so i could more easily, and with better results, photograph all the white things in nature that i previously found so difficult to document. i was subsequently reminded that i have a really kick-ass bone collection in a series of lucite boxes in my basement. and they’re white.

collection of found bones

 

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compoundly pinnate

compoundly pinnate

something beyond my understanding appeals to me about pinnate leaves. it has to be more than just symmetry. when i think that ferns grew alongside dinosaurs, i wonder if our species has just spent enough time looking at feathery fronds that  the pleasure of it got baked into our genes, like feeling a little bit attached to the daily episodes of the sun’s rising and falling, to start and end our days.

sumac leaves

saint paul, minnesota

  • Dorothea says:

    Dear Mary Jo,
    Thank you for this lovely blog and for tirelessly posting a new picture every day. I love the arrangements and their simple beauty. I read about your site in a German magazine and for several months now, this is one of the first things I do in the morning: refresh the page, watch the photograph. Pause and enjoy :).
    Best wishes, Dorothea

    reply

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homesick

homesick

in the midst of making our own minnesota home new again, steve made the mistake today of tuning in, via the internet, to france culture, the radio station he listens to in france as he drives the kids to and from school. suddenly he was mentally driving past rolling hills of vines, listening to a public radio station in the midst of a discussion about the poet baudelaire, with an imagined evening ahead of him that might involve olives from the tree behind the house, or the wine of friends, or those friends themselves, or all three. and steve was suddenly very homesick for a place that is not technically his home, but where he lives quite often in spirit.

olive tree branches

 

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be still my beating…

be still my beating…

doesn’t happen often, but today i tried, and i couldn’t do any better than wiki: “pink hydrangeas have many different meanings, but generally mean, ‘you are the beat of my heart,’ as described by the celebrated asian florist tan jun yong, where he was quoted saying, ‘the light delicate blush of the petals reminds me of a beating heart, while the size could only match the heart of the sender!'”

hydrangea (possibly antique green)

shoreview, minnesota

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