Saturday Snapshot July 16: Solace

It’s a mad, mad, mad, mad world.

I’d never imagine myself typing these words other than the title of the 1963 comedy. Tragedy instead, and very real, not in a movie. What’s happening these past days can drive one to despair. I’m not just thinking about the celebratory crowd mowed down by a truck, family with children watching fireworks. Or here, a mother murdered in her own home, her five year-old girl missing and three days late, her body found in a field. O, a national anthem and a peaceful baseball game jeopardized by a lone-wolf tenor. Or, a U.S. presidential candidate vowing to declare war once he’s elected.

That’s why I appreciate the Pond more and more these days. Not just to take me away from screens big and small, get some fresh air, breathe in the sight and sound of another world. No need for words, it’s a living testament of Nature reassuring the Maker’s Grace, antidote of madness. Not so much a place to escape but to think, revive, and just be.

Peace returns soon as I step out of the car. How does that song go? All things bright and beautiful, all creatures great and small. I love them all, well some more than others. Like, I’m partial to the tiny yellow warbler than the muskrat:

Yellow Warbler


I’ve pictures of the muskrat too, but never mind.

The quiet poise of the Eastern Kingbird. Got a juvenile here, I think, from the downy front. Such a tiny creature unknowingly is a carrier of a reaffirming message:

Eastern KB

Yes, even the ‘common’ sparrow (has a name too, Savannah) looks smart and confident. O the comfort of neither having to reap or sow, of being cared for:

The Sparrow

Or no need to worry what to put on. The Cedar Waxwing is often adorned and well groomed, ready for any photo op., yet raising no jealousy:

Cedar Waxwing

It’s a peaceful world out here by the Pond. Another song just come to mind…



And let it begin with us.


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If she’s not birding by the Pond, Arti’s likely watching a movie, reading, or writing a review. Creator of Ripple Effects, bylines in Asian American Press, Vague Visages, Curator Magazine.

27 thoughts on “Saturday Snapshot July 16: Solace”

  1. Arti, the images of birds in trees are comforting and reassuring. The established order of the natural world, with all its pleasures and beauties that continue, reminds me of eternal things. We don’t escape, when we retreat to places like your Pond, but we connect more deeply to an enduring reality, more real and healthy, as you say, than the craziness that threatens to make us crazy. And your photos are wonderful! I love your birds; they are so exotic to me 🙂

    Listening to the human singers, I broke down when the camera zoomed in on the clasped hands. The experience of those young people, joining with their friends and expressing with their own bodies – hands and voices – the message of the prayerful song, will no doubt have a lifelong effect on them as individuals, helping them to live out their hope. May the Lord have mercy on us all.


    1. Thanks Gretchen for your thoughtful words and gentle reminder. We do “connect more deeply to an enduring reality” when we are in the midst of Nature, for “He has set eternity in the human heart”. Thanks for stopping by my virtual pond where we can share and I hope, find some form of solace. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  2. It’s absolutely insane out there, what is happening to this world we live in? I am heavy-hearted and staying away from world news, any news. I want to tune out forever.

    It’s wonderful that you find solace in bird watching, love your captures. Take me, please take me away from the madness, I’d join you.

    A walk in the woods will be nice too. Thanks for your post…


    1. Thanks Mabel for stopping by and leaving some ripples. Hope one day I can take you to the real Pond where you too can take some pictures. 😉


  3. Thank God for retreats like your Pond. In my backyard, birds serenade us everyday, from morning to nightfall. Their choir of different kinds of birds….doves, finches, sparrows, etc.. calling to one another is a delightful background to quiet reading in the leafy patio. We all need these spaces to remind us of how God has blessed the universe.


    1. Yes, thanks for stopping by this virtual pond and throwing in your two pebbles. I sure hope that this spot too can be a place of solace. Glad you have all kinds of birds coming right to your backyard so you have no need to tread the wild. 😉


  4. The past two weeks have been particularly violent, Arti, and then we have a scary, loose cannon, world-class buffoon running for president down here. If elected, I shudder to think how he’ll make an already bad situation so much worse. Like you, I love birds, too, but unlike you, I can’t capture such magnificent images of them. After the past two weeks, I have feathered friend envy. I wish I had wings and could just fly away from the madness.


    1. LA,

      So I can see all eyes are on Cleveland the next few days. What are your plans, just wondering… As for a place to escape the urban cacophony, you have Central Park. And I envy you, for that’s a hot spot for bird watchers.


  5. Arti thank you for your sentiments and yes, I too look to nature to escape human foibles and terror. So much blame going on today about the Turkish coup as well — I don’t want to fall into the untrue trap that the world was a simpler place before now, because it wasn’t — there has been horrible deeds and wars well before my birth — WWI and WW2, to name a few. There was brutal fascism in Germany and Europe waking folks from there beds at night ripping families and communities apart because of a religion. That was terror to six million people. I wish I had the answers and I don’t seem to see any fair and just is far bigger than I can fathom. Thank you for being you and sharing the pond and the beauty of nature !


    1. Heather,

      You’re absolutely right. The world has progressed and we sure don’t want to see the atrocities of WWII Europe or militarism in the Pacific happen again. Unfortunately what we have are much more intensified conflicts and polarization of views, even in “peace time” we’re like at war. Anyway, I’m glad beauty still exists, and peace, true, internal peace as the song says start with each individual. And it’s my personal conviction that our Maker has the power to create a new heart within each of us. Thanks for your visit to this virtual Pond and sharing your thoughts. 😉


  6. Early Sunday morning, I was moved by the same impulse. I got in the car and drove to “my” wildlife refuge. where I watched birds, sought out flowers, and watched the great, billowing clouds rise above the prairie. I spent all day there, and it was evening when I returned home, and heard about the latest murder of policemen in Baton Rouge.

    At that point, I made a choice. Rather than going to the radio or computer, and spending the next hour or two focused on that horror, I simply turned off the news, and spent that time going through my photos. There was nothing I could do for the people in Baton Rouge. There was nothing I could do about the terrible postings on social media. There was no way for me to reach out to the victims’ famlies.

    What we can do in these situations is accept the gifts we’ve been given, and share them. Your photos here have spread some joy, witnessed to peace. In a world run amok, that may be the best gift of all.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. There are benefits of being in the Land of Limited Internet (and equally limited cable and to a lesser degree TV, but it is never on.) It overwhelms me. Yet I look at your world of the birds, I look at my sunsets and Duckster family, I look at good conversations and healing of hearts and I see hope. I don’t know that it is hope for the world but at least hope that we can hold onto for as long as we can.

    A beautiful and thoughtful post, my friend. And indeed. Solace in friendship, in nature, in love — it’s essential.


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