A floating field of white lilies stretches as far as the eye can see. They’re beautiful flowers that can’t make up their minds whether they want to be land plants or water plants, so they do a little of both. The photo doesn’t do justice to how sparkly and magical the scene truly is. The water reflects the sun back, and it’s as if an entire field of gems are sparkling at my feet. Families of ducks and geese and frogs abound, and deer and small land creatures are always stopping by for a drink of water on these hot days of summer.
|A floating field of lilies.|
It’s an idyllic scene I often pass in my travels. Sometimes I see tourists stopping to take pictures, and I wonder who will see them and what they’ll think. Looking at the photo now, I can’t see what I always see in my mind when I’m actually there. The tourists can’t see it either. But because I have traveled by so often, I have seen the many faces of this one place.
There is the sparkling sun of summer and the magnificent white lilies in this white-lily-only pond. (I have not found even one pink lily!) They’re actually quite large up close, and they lay across the water like lovers spread out on a silk bed, enticing the sun. He does not disappoint. But my mind wanders, and the scene before me changes. Fall has come, and the lovely lily pads are changing colors. The flowers may be gone, but now the fabulous floating foliage takes center stage for a short while. All too soon, though, it is gone. Brown sets in, and then exhausted tan follows soon after.
Then the silence comes. It is very loud, this silence. First the white appears, and then the grey severity of the ice sets in. The lilies are nowhere to be found. The geese have flown south. The ducks huddle on the shore, and the frogs have disappeared. And still the silence blares.
Then it stops suddenly, and a tiny green wisp arrives—something from nothing, again. Soon the place is cluttered once more with everything green, and buzzing insects are everywhere. The dragonflies particularly enjoy taking their chances with the frogs. Sometimes they win. Sometimes they don’t. But it never stops them from playing the game.
It starts all over again. The white lilies explode and cover the area the same as the snow. In the winter I stop by to see the green and the lilies and the new baby ducks in my mind. In the summer I stop by to see the snow-covered, razor-sharp ice in my mind. It’s a strange habit I have. I don’t always see what’s in front of my eyes, but what was once there and will be again. It’s really all the same thing, I think. The change lies within the eyes of the perceiver and not that which is perceived.