Don't Just Smell The Roses


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The lengthening days of spring turn our eyes towards the earth. We rake the last of the leaves, weed the emerging flowers, prepare the mower and the trimmer and perhaps ready our gardens. Sometimes we focus too much on the ground and miss the the dance in the air.

Just the other morning, the sun was rising and the air still had a slight chill. Sipping coffee, I looked out the window at the daffodils but then my senses were bombarded by an aerial display that gave me cause to just watch the air. Having recently filled the bird feeders the night before, I was given a pleasant surprise by our feathered friends. Scores of bright yellow goldfinches flew to and from the feeders. Last years pair of humming birds hovered at the window as if saying “thanks for the sweet nectar” and buzzed to the red glass for their morning drink. At least two dozen robins paraded across the lawn in search of emerging worms. Blue jays came in and scattered the goldfinches, but only momentarily. Red winged black birds took their turn on the sunflower feeders only to be replaced by chickadees. A small flock of geese flew low and then honked their way to the nearest body of water.

The air was alive with life, color and sounds and songs. The parade and acrobats continued and scores of barn swallows performed feats of flight that still mystify our best engineers. It then dawned on me that perhaps we look down to often. We get so caught up with the chores that must be done on the ground that we overlook the beauty and inspiration that circle above us. It seems that these days we are so concerned with the negative side of our world that we neglect its beauty. These wonderful creatures worry not about where they will get their food, they just search and find. Nature, sometimes working through us, provides for their needs. They do not worry about their next meal, where they will sleep or how to escape the next storm. They just live life to its fullest and sing their songs and do what needs to be done and at least appear happy with the bounty that has been provided for them.

Perhaps we should take a lesson from these wonderful creatures. Perhaps we should not be so concerned about the trials of life and so consumed with worry that we manifest all sorts of diseases. Perhaps we should go through life in expectation that our needs are met. Perhaps we should sing a little more, allow others their turn at the trough and relish the sheer joy of each breath. If we could just understand that when one feeder goes empty, there are plenty more to choose from and we need not worry ourselves to death.

Maybe by looking up just a little more, rather than down, we will the see the beauty and joy that is all around us, that is available by opening our eyes. We move through our days so quickly that we fail to take the lessons that are offered freely and openly. Take a moment and don’t just smell the roses, but look around at all of the beauty that nature offers.

Mr. Harris was born in Massachusetts. He attended The American University in Washington, D. C. and received his degree in Political Science. His graduate work was done at the University of Northern Colorado and Howard University. While in D. C. , he spent several years working for local and regional government agencies. Upon moving to Maine he worked with three governors and served as the Assistant Director of the Maine State Planning Office. He worked on a White House Task Force for the development of a National Rural Policy and later served as Rural Policy Coordinator at the Federal Regional Council of New England. He has worked on gubernatorial and senatorial political campaigns and currently works in Special Education.

Mr. Harris is co-author of the novel WAKING GOD and is a nationally syndicated and featured writer for The American Chronicle. He is working on Book II of the Waking God trilogy and writing features for literary E-zines. His second novel, A MAINE CHRISTMAS CAROL has been released by Cambridge Books. Contributing writer for UPI's Religion&Spirituality web site.


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