Thoughts

Hidden Life of Trees book cover

The Hidden Life of Trees

I often visit with trees on my land and when I’m hiking. I like to pat them and give them words of appreciation. I’ve known intuitively that trees get lonely when they are separated from others of their own species. Even though it sometimes feels a little weird to interact like this with trees it also feels right.

The Hidden Life of Trees makes a case that trees are a communal species and their very survival depends on how they communicate, form communities and share resources with their own species and a host of others, like fungi and bacteria.

We owe it to the health of our planet to learn about trees. Trees are a major force in climate control and in stabilizing the surface of our planet.  So many acres of rich and productive land in many areas of the world has eroded away into barren dessert because trees were clear cut. Trees are a major source of joy for us, if we slow down and notice their quiet steady presence and beauty. I guarantee that reading “The Hidden Life of Trees” will elevate your understanding and appreciation of our tree friends.

If you love trees you’ll enjoy reading this book!

Bees

Honeybee Chemistry

Bees can visit 2000 flowers a day in their quest to collect nectar for the hive. bees fly, they pick up a positive electrical charge from the air. An experiment revealed that flowers emit a specific electrical signal that attracts bees when their nectar supply has been regenerated. This explains why I see bees passing by many flowers and landing on the one flower that has recharged its nectar supply.

This girl is gathering nectar from a Beach Heliotrope at Manini Beach. She has little balls of beige pollen attached to her legs. In case you didn’t know, sigh…… it’s the girl bees that do all the work in the hive and flying thousands of miles to gather nectar. It’s not that the guys, the drones, don’t do any work at all. Their main job is to mate with the Queen. That’s a lot of work. And then they immediately die.

 

Mom Baby Goats

Goats

I often hike the Keauhou coastline, traversing my way through Kiawe thickets and making my way down to the red and black high-fired expanse of undulating pahoehoe formations along the ocean. One day I meandered along lost in my daydreams. Out of thin air a herd of goats bolted, flying in a swirl of delicate hooves, horns pointing skyward, grace set in motion skimming across lava, against the deep blue sky and ocean spewing white spray. I was stunned. I’d have never guessed that goats could embody the essence of beauty with such presence and power.

I thought I knew what goats were about. Not much about goats interested me – until that day. How can an animal whose hooves are no larger than the circumference of a tea cup race at that speed across tumbled and twisted lava? I experienced goats for the first time in my life. I now imagine that goats have senses and ways of perceiving that I cannot fathom. Is it too fantastic to propose that maybe they even may have sensors, like eyes, in their hooves that guide them across any terrain they care to traverse? And at any speed they care to traverse it. And with glorious confidence!

In my little box, when I thought “goat” knee-jerk images arose: barnyards, whiny bleating, rank smell, their reputation for eating anything that doesn’t move. Now the thought “goat” brings me a surge of happiness, blue sky and ocean, delicate, purposeful, power, and grace.

Art is a sure way out of the box. My opening step in creating art is usually a wisp of an idea that comes to me and seems to invite me to explore. So I step forward and I hear, I touch, I feel curiosity – wondering what will come. And then more comes. I see color I never saw before. I discern. I notice. And then usually at some point the image comes full force or trickles in through dreams or insights. This process calls me to pay attention and receive life in its infinite forms. It is this openness to life that gives me my deepest joy. Thank you my dear goat friends, for showing me how to be alive!

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