Wapiti and Water Lilies

Photograph Roxy Whalley                          

This spring the elk and deer seemed particularly springy.

I watched elk frolic in the fields my McGregor Ranch, prancing around after each other in total abandon, and they looked to be playing the game of tag.

Unusual behavior for elk.

Behind the Notch Top Café in town there is a small pond. In spring and early summer water lilies grace its surface.

One day I happened to be driving through a herd of elk along the road by this pond, and while waiting for them to move out of the road I glanced at the pond, and was delighted to see two elk, a yearling and a full grown female, each leap from the bank onto one of the water lilies’ huge green leaves. After pouncing on the leaf, for there is no doubt it was intentional, they returned to the edge of the pond, and repeated the motion. The lily sank, then popped up again, and the elk turned their heads quickly, saw it pop up, and then pounced on it again.

This happened repeatedly; pounce, wait, watch, head turn, pounce.

I could not help laughing at their play, for there is not a doubt in my mind, that they were playing.

~ ~ ~

Roxy Whalley

Written in the spring of 1999 in my journal

Bright Burns the Flame

fire_flames_clip_art_26238A poem by mother sent to me from England many years ago ~ Author Unknown, I don’t know if a family member of mine wrote it or some total stranger (Posted by Roxy Whalley). I kept the original spelling, as some of it is Old’e English.

 

 

Bright Burns the Flame

Beechwood fire burns bright and clear,

if the logs are kept a year.

~

Store your Beech for Christmastide,

with new year holly cut beside.

~

Chestnuts only good they say,

if for years ‘ tis stowed away.

~

Birch and Firwood burn too fast,

blaze too bright and do not last.

~

Flames from Larch will shoot up high,

dangerously, the sparks will fly.

~

But, Ashwood green and Ashwood brown,

are fit for a Queen with a golden crown.

~

Oaken logs, if dry and old,

keep away the winter cold.

~

Poplar gives a bitter smoke,

fills your eyes and makes you choke.

~

Elmwood burns like church yard mold,

e’er the very flames are cold.

~

Hawthorn bakes the sweetest bread,

so it is, in Ireland said.

~

Applewood will scent the room,

Pearwood smells like flowers in bloom.

~

But, Ashwood wet and Ashwood dry,

a King may warm his slippers by.

 

~~~~~~~~

~~~

~

~ Alone on Valentines ~

359 - Roses for Roxy - Dec 24

A hot bath, a glass of wine, and many candles.
With blinds open from ceiling to floor,
I watch the trees dance in the raw, wild, untethered wind as I soak in the wet warmth.
The clouds pass by as though they are late for a date,
and the snow sparkles in the moonlight.
The trees cast their dancing shadows on the white, crisp, ground.
I rise from the water, and dripping, walk into the living room.
Here I open the blinds, so the room is lit only by the light of the nights sun.
Gentle music surrounds me, and wraps me in a warm feeling.
I sway like the trees in the wind, naked, and alone,
I dance.
The earths love is all around me.
A coyote howls at the moon,
or perhaps he is calling his lover.

Roxy Whalley ~ Valentines Alone, 2014

 

February 14, 2014, was the first valentines day in my life when I didn’t hear the words ‘I Love You’ from family, friend or lover. I didn’t even get an e-card. I probably brought this fate upon myself as I didn’t send out anything either. Normally, I send out things which prompts a response, but this year I wanted to see if anyone thought of me first, without a prompt. I got my answer.

Instead of moping, and feeling sorry for myself, I decided to make the most of the evening alone, and then I wrote the poem. It was a beautiful evening.

(My cabin is at the end of a dirt road, and is surrounded by National Forest and mountains, and no neighbors close enough to see in. It was cold, snowy and windy outside, and I did not fear anyone seeing me).

Walking in the Woods

I found this in a very old journal of mine, I don’t remember it at all, but I’m going to assume I wrote it. Maybe when I was a teenager. I talk of the woods (England), instead of the forest, and it’s written in a more childlike manner.

 

When you go into the woods,

your presence makes a splash,

and the ripples of your arrival

spread like circles in water.

 

Long after you have stopped moving,

your presence widens in rings

through the woods.

After a while this fades,

and the pool of silence is tranquil again.

 

You are either forgotten, or accepted –

you are never sure which.

Your presence has been absorbed into the

pattern of the universe.

You become part of it,

and this is when the learning begins.

 

Roxy Whalley

Year unknown – At a very young age?

Snow Blizzard

093 - Waltonia

 

In answer to our prayers she came,

Claiming the land as her own.

Bellows of whiteness blinding our vision,

So welcome was this loss of sight.

 

A trillion tiny white angels,

star shaped and intricate in their uniqueness.

Upon the earth formed mounds of

impenetrable moistness.

 

Suffocating the land, yet offering life.

Protecting the spring buds from cold,

Yet cold she was.

 

Cold enough to warm the heart.

White enough to brighten our souls.

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

In 2000 – 2002, Colorado experienced drought conditions. I wrote this poem in 2003 one day, when I was sitting and remembering the first snow we received, that marked the ending of that drought.

Roxane Whalley ~ March 19th 2003

~ The dawn of a new kind of war ~

Wildlife and Birds

- The Eagle and the Hummingbird-v -I was truly amazed when this hummingbird decided to check out this Bald Eagle, and I am awed by the size difference. What an amazing world it is.Best viewed extra largeWhen I’m not writing (or working a normal job), I’m usually out photographing nature. On this day I had decided to go to Lake Estes for a little down time before going to work, and was lucky enough to see the bald eagle. When the hummingbird came into the picture, I managed to capture him in flight, with the bald eagle included. A very rare moment indeed.

This image and others are available for purchase on my web page, Nature Photography by Roxy Whalley.

15-minute Unedited Piece–Box of Crayons

What are these 15-minute unedited pieces all about?

Women’s Writing Group – January 7, 2011

At this meeting we were asked the following question, and told to write about anything that came to mind, in 15-minutes or less: Remember when Eight Crayons Were All the Colors You Needed?

The first thing I thought of when I thought of a box of crayons, was how uncomplicated things were when I was a child, and how complicated they are as an adult. I strive to live a simple life, but in this culture it’s difficult, even for me.

                                                         ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

I just wanted a simple, relaxing trip to the Grand Canyon, but first there was so much to do. There was mail to put on hold, things to pack, camping gear to repair, food to stock, oil changes for the vehicle, tire pressure to check, maps to study, cash to withdraw, and the list never seemed to end.

Finally, I was ready to go. I’d decided to take this trip because I was so in need of getting away from society, consumerism, and the daily rush and grind of every day life in the city. My body was craving silence, simplicity, open skies, nature.

I recalled those days of childhood, when everything was so simple. I found sheer delight in a box of crayons and a piece of scrap paper. A puddle would turn into an ocean when I put my paper boat on it, some logs in the woods would be my castle. I craved a joy that simple. Something that required no effort to make it enjoyable. I just wanted the joy to be there, with no planning.

The first part of the drive to the Grand Canyon was fraught with tension, interstates, signs, trucks whizzing by, signal here, switch lanes, shift gears. It all seemed like so much work, so complicated, too much for the mind to handle all at once. My brain screamed as another big rig whizzed by me, and buffeted my little jeep. It wasn’t until I turned off the interstate and started along the back roads of Utah that I began to relax. I had chosen an indirect route to the Grand Canyon, hoping that driving for a few days first would help me to unwind; prepare for the anticipated moment of sheer grandeur.

It was surprising what I found. My goal had been to reach one of the Seven Wonders of the World, but as I drove through the Utah back roads, and the red rock and desert unfolded around me, I found that my goal to reach the Grand Canyon faded. I had craved simplicity, I had craved joy in the moment, and as I relaxed into my travels, I found that each new road held its own form of joy. There was a new wonder around every bend, and I learned that I didn’t have to drive to a grand view to find beauty, and simplicity, for it was here, all around me. All I had to do was give it a chance to enter my soul, right here and now.

Roxy Whalley ~ January 7, 2011