One book leads to another...

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Between Two Sides

At a shallow gradient where a sparkling stream gurgles softly over water-smoothed stones, the energetic beaver tirelessly antagonizes his human neighbors with the construction of sturdy and extremely efficient dams.  An accord to this timeless war-of-wills wasn’t reached until someone discovered that the beaver, with all his intelligence and ingenuity, is at heart a peace lover. Peace and quiet that is. He cannot stand the sound of rushing water. Upon relocation to a quieter area, the beaver does not build dams, focusing instead on other, less annoying projects.

While motives widely vary, the single most important, yet latent element between two sides is not impossible to find. It might be found shrouded in doublespeak, or tucked neatly behind carefully crafted diversions. It could also be lurking in uncanny camouflage, but it’s there; the fundamental truth in the middle. Often as not, the truth is stranger than fiction.

And it’s not just people and not just the fittest. The desire for self-preservation doggedly exists in all of nature, as evidenced in the photos below:

At first glance, these two tiny field workers are trudging diligently onward, but they actually enjoy a somewhat sheltered life in relative seclusion as a mushrooming new species called G. Britannicum.

Either someone has forgotten to put away a few Halloween decorations here, or the once vibrant Snapdragons have all gone to seed.

This could very well be photo-shopped but isn’t it intriguing?

“Great is the art of beginning, but greater is the art of ending.” ~ Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Do you look for the truth in the middle? Do you have any strange things growing in your garden? How about Snapdragons?


  1. Hi, dear Diedre!

    I've been checking back here from time to time to make sure I wasn't missing a post. In recent weeks the blogs of several friends have not been entering the reader stream in a timely manner. I am very happy to be experiencing an early morning brain massage as I read your latest musings.

    It's a very interesting fact about beaver behavior that they build dams because they don't like the sound of rushing water. That piece of information saved me from committing a faux pas. On his birthday I was going to give a beaver friend of mine one of those "white noise" machines that supposedly helps you sleep at night. :)

    The pictures of the Geastrum britannicum fungus and the Snapdragon stem are, to me, signs that our creator has a sense of humor. My father, the lifelong shutterbug, loved to take pictures of fungus, fruits, flowers, leaves and bark, plus any and all insect and toad species that happened to be nearby.

    My guess is that the picture of the bicycle enveloped by the tree trunk is real. My guest author/blogger Kathleen Mae Schneider encountered a similar phenomenon at, of all places, the Shady Dell in York, PA! If you would kindly take a couple of minutes and read my post containing pictures of it, you will gain important background information about the Dell that I would like a friend of your status to have. Kathleen will soon be returning to SDMM with more chapters of her mother Margaret's memoirs describing life at the Dell in the early years of the 20th century. Here's the address of my post:

    Thank you very much, dear friend Diedre, and enjoy the week ahead!

    1. Hi Shady!
      Oh I can't thank you enough for directing me to what was indeed a magical tour! I thoroughly enjoyed sneaking around the Dell where senses are no doubt heightened simply by being there. The wheel is truly fascinating and I was immensely happy to 'meet' Kathleen! I look forward to more of her mother's memoirs:-)

      I haven't been posting quite as often as I'd like to as tax season has preempted much of my free time. That, and a brand new chapter has begun in my life; which I'll be talking about before long;-)

      Until again my friend, enjoy your week too!

  2. Oh my gosh those are snapdragons? They look like skulls! That is creepy...and cool.

    If someone had left that bike there, it very well could've rusted in place and the tree could've grown around it.

    Mother Nature is awesome!

    1. Hi Chrys!
      That's exactly what I thought about the Snapdragons too!
      I like to think the bike photo is real, if only to remind us how we're not the only ones for whom life goes on;-)
      Yes, Mother Nature is indeed awesome!:-)

  3. Oh wow. Those snapdragons are creepy as all get-out! I don't have anything nearly that interesting growing in my yard anywhere!

    1. Hi Stephanie!
      And to think the flower is so lovely...I've more than one scary weed around my place, if only in its capacity to harm with thorns;-) But nothing quite so um, unappealing - ha!

  4. I love this post, Deidre. It's a great reminder to not believe everything on the surface is what it seems. Dig a little deeper to find the truth. Truth is a funny thing because as humans, we all have different ones even for the same events. Truth in nature seems like it's more 'cut and dried' kind of like those snap dragon seeds. :)

    1. Thanks for the thoughtful comment, Lisa:-) Wouldn't it be wonderful if humans followed the examples that nature so readily reveals? There would be fewer bitter disagreements and, who knows? We might even come to enjoy the harmony;-)


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