Friday, August 31, 2018

A Goodbye to Gloria


Goodbye, Gloria!
Video by Amy LV


Students - Many times I have heard this quote by Italian writer Cesare Pavese: "We do not remember days, we remember moments." I will always remember a moment from this week...the moment when our first monarch butterfly walked up my arm and flew away.

Earlier this summer, I popped in from summer with a post about the milkweed plants in our front garden.  It was Welcome to monarchs.  Today, almost two months later, I say Goodbye.  

Yesterday, I was writing about the week and about Gloria in my notebook. It was at the top of my third page of writing that I wrote the sentence below.

August 30, 2018 Notebook Snip
Photo by Amy LV

Immediately, I placed asteriks around the four words and moved to a new page to begin a poem.

One of my favorite parts of notebook keeping is the not-knowing.  Which words will arrive?  Which words will those words next invite?

Rereading today's poem, I now realize that both this one and my poem from two weeks ago refer to actions not taken rather than actions taken.  It is curious to me how various themes and patterns emerge and repeat within a short writing time span.  Once again I find myself thankful that through writing, I come to understand and see.  You might consider trying this yourself.  Rather than writing about something that DID happen or IS happening, write about what DID NOT happen or WILL NEVER happen.  It's an upside down way of looking at things and often reveals a new thought.

I wish you had all experienced Gloria's glorious flight with me and am happy to offer you these pictures.

The Ghost of Gloria
Photo by Amy LV

Why, Hello, Girl!
Photo by Amy LV

Friendly Butterfly
Photo by Amy LV

A Monarch on Her Own
Photo by Amy LV

If you ever feel at a loss for what to write about - or at a loss for joy - spend some time with plants and animals and weather and sky.  The natural world is evergiving.

Robyn is hosting this week's Poetry Friday roundup at Life on the Deckle Edge. Each week we gather together, sharing poems, books, and poetry ideas all at one blog.  All are always welcome to visit, comment, and post.

Please share a comment below if you wish.

13 comments:

  1. Magic. Magic. Magic. Thank you, Amy, for this WONDER-full post, as in, full of wonder. Lucky Gloria to begin her amazing life at your farm. I also loved your description of process - reminds my of the tried-and-true trick of sketching something upside-down, to clarify composition and positive/negative space. Thanks for sharing your colorful prayer of a butterfly!

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  2. Yes, being outside is a blessing every day. I smiled with your "Hurry up in there" & then more when you ended with "a delicate fluttering prayer". Beautiful thought, Amy.

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  3. Your last line is my favorite! Might be fun to write about baby seahorses in their papa's pocket, kangaroos in mama's, a chick inside an egg. A turtle inside/outside its shell, or baby bats or opossums upside down. Lots of possibilities. Thanks for all you write!

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  4. Oh, if you ever feel at a loss....you wrote those words just for me. Didn't you? I miss the outside now that school has begun. But, I will get out today. Goodbye Gloria....see you next year!

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  6. It's like we DID experience it with you! Thank you, Amy!

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  7. Your poem is lovely. Thank you for sharing Gloria's journey with us. I see quite a few Monarchs in our area, but a sighting never gets old. They are so very beautiful, delicate, magical...

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  8. Amy, your journey with Gloria and her kin has been so inspiring to me. I've been searching our property for the best place to plant milkweed. Gloria is gorgeous, and there is so much to love about your poem. It reminded me of the avocado pit I've been patiently tending for the past two months. Just this week I noticed a strong, white root emerging from its base. There are things we cannot control, but we can nurture and support. Thank you for this lovely post!

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  9. What a a moment to remember. We've had lots of butterflies visit our garden, and I've found monarch caterpillars on the milkweed, but so far no cocoons and emerging butterflies--at least not that I've spied.

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  10. I must use that Pavese quote in a future Two Line Tuesday post on TLD. It rings so true! And I love the moment you captured so beautifully in this post, Amy— the quiet spendor of Gloria's release. The lines in your poem about knocking on the chrysalis door are especially funny and sweet.

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  11. The poem is very beautiful. The Monarch story is so precious to witness. When I was teaching Kindergarten way back, we did the whole process and released the little beauties from our hands in all their majesty, but one refused to leave so I sat in the grass with her long after the children went home. It was a sacred thing, I think. Crazy me - I talked to her and even shed a few tears before she finally lifted into the blue. I felt so blessed to have that experience and it will always stay with me. That was about 18-20 years ago, and even though I did swallowtail butterflies in subsequent years with students, that first time was the most amazing. Thanks for your story and photos. Happy Fall, Amy.

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  12. Nature always helps us see what is truly magical and real and important.

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  13. Thanks for this beautiful quote by Cesare Pavese: "We do not remember days, we remember moments." How true, and the magical flutter and gentle gliding of a monarch–It's fresh to me each time. Lovely post–images of "Gloria," and poem, thanks Amy!

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