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Saturday, July 28, 2018

Inspiration from The Shenandoah Valley

Summer days on the farm sail by like clouds in the blue. Each morning brings a fresh look to our familiar  scenery. The sights that greet us have comforting continuity and yet are ever-changing.  No two days in the country are identical.

Breaking dawn and soon after is the best time of day. Nightly slumber renews the garden, beading every leaf and blossom with dew. Cows amble in the sparkling meadow, and the pond swims with waterfowl... It's the garden of Eden time.

(Lilies with the barn in back.)

Pastoral beauty and flowery nooks beckon and I get out my camera phone. Suspicious geese flee the crazy lady unless I sneak up on them. Fussy bunch. Summer sounds create a symphony while I dart around picture-taking. Birds sing, roosters crow, cows bawl, geese fuss... The cooing of mourning doves is a continual background note, and we have an insane mockingbird who runs through every tune he knows. Repeatedly. The trill of meadowlarks is heavenly. Finches and robins have the happiest song. Red-winged blackbirds sound their classic wetland call at the pond. Ducks converse amiably, unlike the squawky geese.. There is much life here.

I love the music of the garden. Bees hum, crickets chirp, fairies sing...

(Phlox and more phlox)

(Zinnias and cosmos from seed I saved and sowed in May, also pictured below)


(Wild Bee balm and coreopsis tinctoria)

Hazy, hot, and humid stretches of summer do not inspire me. Pics are dulled when the air hangs like a warm wet blanket. My spirits soar in the 'Reaching to heaven blue sky days' and these are the best for image taking. But I also love the mist. Mist lends itself well to mystery. You can hardly say mystery without it.

(Cow in the meadow with the hills beyond it)
Magic returns again in the long summer evenings. We're blessed with a spectacular view of sunsets over the meadow, the pond, and hills with the Allegheny Mountains rolling beyond them. Once again, the geese may enter into these images. It depends on how sneaky I am and how fast they are. The host of lightning bugs blinking in the garden and meadows are impossible to capture on film. Cicadas serenade us from the trees. Earthy farm smells are not for everyone but you have to love the scenery.

(Our pond at dusk)


(Our barn at sunset with sunflowers)


(Phlox at dusk)

I've captured glimpses of midsummer in 'The Shire' as I term our little patch of earth and hope you enjoy my sharing.


(The geese heading toward the meadow-away from me)

(The geese watching the sunset)

(Cows in pasture beneath the setting sun)

'The summer night is like a perfection of thought.' ~Wallace Stevens
'In summer, the song sings itself.' ~William Carlos Williams
'Each fairy breath of summer, as it blows with loveliness, inspires the blushing rose.' ~Author Unknown

(Cone flowers)

'Love is to the heart what the summer is to the farmer’s year — it brings to harvest all the loveliest flowers of the soul.' ~Author Unknown
'Then followed that beautiful season... Summer....
Filled was the air with a dreamy and magical light; and the landscape
Lay as if new created in all the freshness of childhood.'
~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow



'To see the Summer Sky
Is Poetry, though never in a Book it lie –
True Poems flee –'
~Emily Dickinson, c.1879

'I drifted into a summer-nap under the hot shade of July, serenaded by a cicada lullaby, to drowsy-warm dreams of distant thunder.' ~Terri Guillemets

'One of the most delightful things about a garden is the anticipation it provides.' ~W.E. Johns, The Passing Show

(Gaillardia)

***In addition to tending my garden, I'm an author. I write historical, time travel, and paranormal romance. Also young adult. Plus nonfiction about gardening and country life. For more on my books, visit my Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/default/e/B002BLLAJ6/


8 comments:

  1. I always enjoy your posts, Beth, especially the photographs. What a beautiful place to live.

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  2. Thanks so much, Joan. Yes, the farm is beautiful.

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  3. I love the blog and beautiful pics . What a beautiful and magical place for inspiration.

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    1. Thanks so much. We are truly blessed to live here.

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  4. wonderful tour of the "shire". great photo's such serenity is surely a blessing. I can never get close to my goose either and I've had her for 20 years, yes 20!.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks so much. We have some elderly geese, too, but I don't know how old.

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  5. Love the pictures, especially the cows. Thank you!

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