Slow Identity

I’ve been moving so slowly these days, I can barely call this a walk. I’m no longer willing to simply admire the tiniest of flowers; I want to know what they are called. Such discovery takes time.

I have friends and associates who could tell me in an instant the names of most of the woodland’s plants. Meanwhile, though it can be frustrating and slow, I find the process of self-teaching to be far more fulfilling. My guide waits patiently as I turn its pages and digest the information printed on them. No one rushes me or becomes disappointed by what I do not know. Missing a match at first pass, I get a faint sense of what it must be like to discover a species so rare, it is not illustrated in the guidebook.

Meanwhile, never before has man had so many answers at his fingertips. GETTING the answers and LEARNING them are two completely different things. In nature, it is not about what you know for sure; it is about maintaining a strong curiosity and the patience to look closely with wonder.



    1. Paula: The photo is one of the mysteries I mentioned. You are right that it is about the size of a anemone, but the plant leaf suggests otherwise. Meanwhile, the anemones were scattered all around. They’re beginning to drop their petals, but earlier, their significant presence had given a fairy-like feel to the woodland floor.

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