Summer’s Bounty

 

Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful,

we must carry it with us

or we find it not.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

When summer comes with flowers and fruit, vegetable garden, and plenty, we rejoice in the fullnees of it. We sit on a shaded porch or walk in a wildflower painted meadow. We gaze at the clouds in the blue or the starry night sky.

Summer renews us and replenishes us even in its heat. We plant and watch things grow, eat fresh tomatoes and cucumbers chilled and salted. We pack up the extra and save to help us withstand winter.

We pick peas and slurp the red sweetness of watermelon. We stop to inhale the musky scent of ripe cantaloupe.

We cut rose buds for the kitchen windowsill and glory over the height and bright faces of sunflowers. We sit to watch hummingbirds at the feeders and roses, and cows romping in the field.

Dragonflies with white-tipped wings rest on the barbed wire fence’s top strand and then flit and flitter eating gnats made visible in the sinking golden of the sunset.

Grandchildren devour popsicles sitting on the porch swing and blow soap bubbles to enteratain themselves. They run and play on the hay bales. The heat never seems to dissaude them.

The sink is full of warm tomoatoes ready to be canned. The horses have the watermelon rinds thrown over the pasture fence for their treat. The cows wean their calves and dine on sumptuous green grass.

The children go off to summer camps and vacation Bible schools. It is hot. We work in the garden early but not early enough to miss the heat. A cool breeze saves the day. An after supper swim is delicious.

Summer is for the soul.

 

What do you love most about summer?

Blazing Stars Wildflower of the Prairies

Summer on the prairies is a continual feast of beauty.

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July finds us half way through our summer season in Oklahoma.

The prairies are roaring with life. Grasses are shoulder high and in them bees buzz and bumble from flower to flower. There are birds in the mix and butterflies everywhere. Wasps, cicadas, and walking sticks, preying mantis, grasshoppers and leafhoppers fill the windswept stems and grasses with life. Gnats fly in their little swarms. Dragonflies and mayflies add to the business going on. Flies, beetles, honey bees, and work the flowers. The noise is immense––like city traffic yet with no vehicles, voices, sirens, or horns. Maybe a tractor humming along to the same song cutting hay somewhere.

Cows and horses graze the pasture lands and hawks circle overhead. A crow caws his unloveable sound and flies from tree top to treetop. A meadowlark perches on a barbed wire fence and sings for the sheer joy of life. The scissortailed flycatchers balance on the telephone wires and mockingbirds investigate the honeysuckle vines.

Bright butterflies––Satyrs, Tortoiseshells, Hairstreaks,Sulphurs, Monarchs, Admirals, swallowtails, and spotted buckeyes work the meadows. Sunflowers move with the sun and follow the light.

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Fences sag under the wight of wild roses, Queen Ann’s Lace, honeysuckle and trumpet vines. All sorts of plants fill every spot so a person like me could never ever learn all the names of them. There are short plants with pink flowers, yellow flowers, and white and purple blooms down in amongst all the other taller plants. There are cone flowers–– white pink and yellow.

Creeks meander through. Roadways and fences make the other divisons. Pastures, orchards, towns, and meadows sprawl across the prairie lands and life is home there and thriving.

A person just passing by has no idea the amazing numbers of plants, flowers, types of grasses, insects, bugs, spiders, snakes, turtles, frogs and other little animals that live in a piece of prarie. He might, yes, notice a deer, a bison, a bull or a horse, but he might miss the rabbits, the mice, the caterpillars, the armadillos, coyotes, possoms, foxes and cats, the critters, the prairie hens, the sparrows, the egrets, the ducks, the wild hogs, raccoons, skunks, the quail, the owls, and pheasants––the innumerable living things that roam, creep, crawl, fly, bustle, hide, climb, nest, and burrow there.

Like a segment of ocean the prairie is teeming, full to overflowing with life!

 

Summer’s Many Memories

Summer on the farm means bouquets of wildflowers.

Summer means a vegetable garden.

Canning tomatoes on a hot afternoon.

Cows seeking shaded places.

Summer means a trip to Porter for fresh Glohaven peaches.

Summer means roses and butterflies on zinnias.

Summer is waterlilies on the pond.

It’s farmer’s market flowers.

It’s grandkids coming to swim.

Summer is dripping sweet ice cold watermelon, and flags flying high on the Fourth of July. It’s geese at the park, brown-eyed Susan’s, bright sunshine, a feast of color, and roadside flowers.

It’s the sound of laughter, fireworks popping, cicadas and leafhoppers making their music, the happy sound of children shouting and laughing at the swim pool, and the constant rumbling sound of farmer’s on their tractors making hay.

It’s the sight of green garden rows, roses, herons gracefully stalking their prey in the shallows, dogs napping on shady porches, and little girls in brightly colored sundresses.

It’s the vinegary smell of pickles boiling, the scent of lilacs and crepe myrtle, the musty smell of wet swim towels on the clothesline, the smell of a peach cobbler baking, and the unmistakable scent of suntan lotion and bug spray.

It’s the flavor of that first sliced garden tomato, the salty buttery taste of corn on the cob, the sweet of sugary watermelon. It’s the smoky flavor of hamburgers on the grill, the mustard and sweet relish on a hotdog and the delight of blueberry ice cream churned by hand.

Summer is the heat of sunshine streaming on your neck and shoulders, the soothing movement of a porch swing or Grandma’s glider. It’s the cooling rush of plunging into the swimming hole water, the refreshing rush of cold lemonade inside your chest, and the surprising touch of a butterfly landing on your sleeve or a firefly captured in your hand.

Summer is a season and loving, laughing, and living!