Monday, October 11, 2010

A Look at the Quiet Prairie Autumn

It's been almost a full year since I had my total knee replacement. Life has been good since that surgery - I got my mobility back and I no longer have pain. What I do have now is a noisy walk - I click when I walk! But I can garden, mow, take walks, care for the animals, do yoga and generally move again.

While I was recuperating, a dear long time friend, Judy S., sent me a lovely gift - a book called If You're Not From The Prairie by David Bouchard & Henry Ripplinger. It is a beautiful little book that captures the spirit of the prairie through a poem and gorgeous illustrations of the prairie. There is a paragraph that resonates---

When travellers pass through across our great plain,
They all view our home, they all say the same;
"It's simple and flat!" They've not learned to see,
The particular beauty that's now part of me.

The beauty of fall in the prairie includes the grasses. We don't have the massive forests of trees like the Northeast US; rather our trees follow creeks and rivers, surround homesteads and line city streets. Corn fields, grain fields, and grasslands cover our landscape. Nebraska has some forests but they are in specific areas not across the entire state.

The trees that we know have taken so long,
To live through our seasons, to grow tall and strong.
They're loved and they're treasured, we watched as they grew,
We knew they were special --- the prairie has few.

The trees are turning color but the awe for me are the prairie grasses that show off the same color as the trees in the fall - burgundy, red, rust, gold and yellow. Wow! The prairie fall is more subtle but once you experience it, it makes you appreciate the quieter things in nature too.

Pink and gold grass
More color in grass

gold with some rust grass

silver, gold and pink grass

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