A collage of seashells my bill glistens in the light,
Turquoise waters lined with pearls make my eyes so bright,
Black sand spans the structure of my face, every speck perfectly in place.

Like a cave in the ocean depths my neck is so black,
My feathers overlap like schooling fish avoiding attack,
Ocean dancing with golden sun rays, my cheeks are the end of days.

To waters of earth, I have a connection and affection,
As you take a closer look, I am its reflection.

From the surface of water I dive to the depths,
In an endless search for herring while I hold my breath,
Lunging incognito I surprise, clenching my long-hooked bill as I rise.

Enormous my catch reflecting a rainbow so bright,
You quench my insatiable hunger to my tastebuds’ delight,
So unfair you must pay the price, for my life you give the ultimate sacrifice.

Miracle of the moment, admire as I fish and flourish,
Knowing habit conservation is my only wish.

Planet earth is full of beauty and inspiration with an amazing power to quiet racing thoughts and lift our spirits. As Steven Curtis Chapman states so eloquently, be present in the miracle of the moment to observe the beauty around you and actively listen to nature’s rhythmic songs. Enjoy the colors, details, sounds, textures, patterns, aromas, emotions, and sensations. As we are mindful with our full attention and focus, stress begins to dissipate, and joy prevails.

“When we see the world as a gift from God, we will do our best to take care of it and use it wisely, instead of poisoning or destroying it.” – Billy Graham

When we generously care for God’s creation, we take the focus off ourselves and the challenging circumstances we face. This moment of reprieve allows our bodies to rejuvenate and our minds to recenter. My daughters love to save earth worms and cicadas from the perils of the pavement. As we spend time outdoors this summer, admire, find inspiration, and cultivate harmony with native plants, landscapes, and wildlife. Take time to see the milky way, wake with the colors of the sunrise and be still in the awe of the magnificent sunset.

All photos by the author, all rights reserved.

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