Stand and Stare

June 5, 2016

These flowers stopped me in my tracks today as I walked along the road. They were just in the bushes by the pavement and are nothing rare or special (they’re the very common guelder rose). But, their beauty caught my eye and made me stop and look at them more closely.

They are perfect. They look like confectionary flowers you might find on a cake. Perfect little white five-leaved flowers. Wow.

This month the Wildlife Trusts are encouraging us to do something wild every day for thirty days. That might mean taking the time to go out and do something big and whacky, but often it’s simply about noticing what is there around us and making room for nature in our lives.

It’s about stopping and being aware.

Go on, do something today. Sign up to 30 Days Wild with all their ideas, or just simply have a moment when you stand and stare at something beautiful.

What is this life if, full of care,

We have no time to stand and stare.

No time to stand beneath the boughs

And stare as long as sheep or cows.

No time to see, when woods we pass,

Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass.

No time to see, in broad daylight,

Streams full of stars, like skies at night.

No time to turn at Beauty’s glance,

And watch her feet, how they can dance.

No time to wait till her mouth can

Enrich that smile her eyes began.

A poor life this if, full of care,

We have no time to stand and stare.

(W.H. Davies)

PS If you’d like to tell me what you do, I’d love to hear.

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  • Reply David Beattie June 5, 2016 at 6:03 pm

    I’m doing #30DaysWild Ruth. Up to now I have learned a bit more about bees, got up early to listen to birds, walked by a river, admired God’s creation in a flower and shared a wild walk with a Watch Group from Liverpool

    • Reply ruthvalerio June 5, 2016 at 7:20 pm

      That’s lovely David, keep going!

  • Reply Joanna June 5, 2016 at 8:13 pm

    I am staying in our caravan with my husband out on our land in Latvia with our alpacas, chickens, cats and sheep for company. We have eagles, ospreys, hen harriers flying around and regularly see deer etc. along the way but I realised as I read your blog that I still get too busy, just doing stuff. Care and maintenance at this time of year is time consuming and I am trying to finish off two courses too. We do stop when something catches our eye, but even so still not enough to drink it all in. I am realising I need to look up more and stop being so worried about tripping over my own two feet. A metaphor for life I think,

  • Reply ruthvalerio June 5, 2016 at 8:34 pm

    Gosh that’s such a nice comment, thank you Joanna. May you have some special stopping moments.

  • Reply Jo June 8, 2016 at 4:18 pm

    I’ve spent light evenings walking with my husband and teenaged children in the meadows and along the river near where we live, being wowed by the wildflowers and bees and birds. I gave my new next-door neighbour a bunch of flowers picked from my (slightly chaotic) garden as a happy-new-house present. And I’ve been reading writers who celebrate the wonder of the world around us, like Gerard Manley Hopkins. #30dayswild is a great reminder to slow down and enjoy the best things.

  • Reply ruthvalerio June 8, 2016 at 6:45 pm

    Wow that sounds nice – and such beautiful weather for you to be doing that too. All the best to you – thanks for commenting.

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