Nature's Place

Advertising …

P1450075_filtered-001

Everything’s an ad, symbolises or points to something else. Can’t get away from it, in relationship – existence.

This spider was waving to another spider across the way, part of the mating ritual I believe – having seen other spiders do similar that was obviously ritual.

Some are very demonstrative, colourful, eager. Others wary, reticent, indifferent. People can be emotional too, carrying the weight of particular past, as we tend to.

No matter, we do our best to transcend the robotic and all’s equal in the end. The end being the absence of all that existential commotion.

Never could pretend enthusiasm that didn’t turn flat. :-)

© Mark Berkery … CLICK any picture to enlarge in a new tab …

*

 

 

Gardening …

P1080769-001 - Mark Berkery

P1080774-001 - Mark Berkery

P1080752 - Mark Berkery

… in the mind too.

Spring time and all the forms of nature are on the rise. These flies, Doli for short, emerged around one particular plant and I got some shots in the early morning. Have tried getting some shots of the adults but they are flash sensitive and are gone on the pre-flash. It’s rare they stay for a shot.

Occasionally it occurs to me how I started doing macro. After I got a camera and was spending time in nature it became obvious my attraction was to the small creatures at my feet rather than big creatures over there or broad landscapes.

The nearer the better it seems soon took my energies and it was 2 or 3 years of application before I was really any good. It was a process of elimination, of what didn’t work, to reveal what works.

*

Someone started me on it, photography. I don’t remember exactly how but do remember C had some influence. He was a friend in his way. I say ‘his’ way since he was a friend and then one day he just stopped communicating.

Don’t know what happened but I am grateful for the small things. From seed big trees grow, and die.

All the best C old friend, wherever thee may be.

© Mark Berkery … CLICK any picture to enlarge in a new tab …

*

Little Heart, Big Hearted …

Carpenter Bee making nest early 2013

Mother Carpenter Bee making the nest early 2013 – a rare appearance as she tossed debris

Teddy Bear Bee feeding on nearby flowers

Male Carpenter Bee feeding on nearby flowers

The best I could get - she's big and fast

The best I could get – he’s big and fast – I was lucky

It’s a male Carpenter Bee, I think. It has been occupying the nest excavated in 2013 by the female/mother – I believe – Carpenter Bee. The nest is in a two inch thick stick I had to secure to a metal rod after it rotted in the ground – soft wood.

Then I built the no-till garden beds and recently, a week or so ago, sowed some seed that needed shade from the hot sun, and the shade got in the bees way of returning home – that I noticed one day, having already missed it.

So I remedied the situation, I thought, only to find something else had acted to block the nest for a short while. And no bee to be seen for days now. I wonder if it has another nest somewhere …

I doubt its little heart could survive the rigours of homelessness for long, not like people do. People, it seems, can adapt to almost anything … almost.

We can usually retreat, recover and renew – if the situation allows.

*And just after posting this he returned to the nest.

© Mark Berkery … CLICK any picture to enlarge in a new tab …

*

Sense and Sensation

P1080689 - Mark Berkery

P1080682 - Mark Berkery

P1080681 - Mark Berkery

P1080711 - Mark Berkery

The local stingless bees are well fed the mornings here. Salad plants, started as seedlings meant to be eaten, gone to seed and now 4 foot tall with white and yellow flowers are their source of nourishment, for now – with much to come if seed cast and sown is viable, with some already visible.

They are gone by early afternoon, back to do hive work. Lots of coming and going in the garden, not a lot for me to shoot though – too small or fast.

*

The pure sensation, a simple tingling inside once you get down to it. A sense upon which the mind is ever trying to create ‘something’, as thought and emotion. The exercise is to resist the pull of the mind to think by focusing on the sensation.

And this occurs in space, the sense of it inside. The more it’s done, the greater the realisation. It takes time, and there is no failure – just the endeavour.

It really is that simple … and a couple more things. :-)

© Mark Berkery … CLICK any picture to enlarge in a new tab …

*

Gone …

P1080633-001 - Mark Berkery

P1080597-001 - Mark Berkery

P1080648-001 - Mark Berkery

… I was thinking last week I would offer to teach meditation once more and then, out of the blue, one lady who had been before rang to ask if she could come along, saying she saw my current ad in the local paper.

Thing is I don’t have a current ad, or didn’t when she rang. So I took the cue and will start teaching next week – if anyone wants to come along …

All are welcome, especially any who already recognise the need for peace of mind.

*

Meditation is the beginning of the end of the mind as a problem. It naturally leads to the practise of being and both are done alone.

There is another realisation of space and sensation that can be called love that is done in partnership.

A rare event … one foot in front of the other.

© Mark Berkery … Click on any picture to enlarge in a new tab …

*

Disguised

P1080586 - Mark Berkery

Tending to the compost bin recently I noticed what looked like a bee come to investigate. It looked and flew like a bee in that its path was cautious, slow and deliberate as it entered the open drum and made its way around inside.

When it stopped on the plastic rim of the entrance I got a few shots and it became apparent it was a fly, by the eyes and other parts, to me.

A bee mimicking fly, must afford it some advantage. Difficult to see past the disguise in motion.

© Mark Berkery … CLICK any picture to enlarge in a new tab …

*

The Dead of …

P1070884 - Mark Berkery

Male and Female Lynx spiders

P1070896-001 - Mark Berkery

P1080248-001 - Mark Berkery

P1060811-001 - Mark Berkery

 

… winter, if that it be.

Sun shines so much I don’t know you see.

But the absence of little ones is telling to me.

Time spent in the garden used mostly to pee.

So no pix to post on this dark wintry night.

Crows only about that do take to flight.

Maybe a pic from the past is aright.

One from a world that can afright.

*

Time ebbs and flows, form comes and goes, how hard it sticks depends on a coupla tricks.

Tricks as in feeling for the bottom to clear out the mud, looking not thinking that settles the water, reaching with seeing to the emptiness above and beyond. Where there’s nothing to take or to give. Til the nothing I am in all things is all there is left, until …

Time ebbs and flows, form comes and goes …

*

© Mark Berkery … CLICK any picture to enlarge in a new tab …

*

Night Fly

P1080497-001 - Mark Berkery

P1080504 - Mark Berkery

P1080510 - Mark Berkery

P1080507-001 - Mark Berkery

Not much to report from the wilds, in fact the garden has the feel of stasis due to the recent cold. But there’s never really nothing, is there … So I do the rounds of the various nooks and crannies and what do I find but one of the great survivors, the garden fly.

This one, and a couple others, was making his bed in the flowers, literally. At sundown I would find it down on the flower’s centre while the petals would close up around it, to keep the cold and wind off. Not an unintelligent action at all.

In fact it isn’t hard to see the intelligence in any part of nature, the power animating and giving function to the form so that all the parts fit together to make the whole, of nature. It only requires the surrender of prejudice, thought.

Nature, what we are in existence, is represented by the planet and all its parts, the night sky full of stars too, and looks like it never ends, ‘out there’.

Intelligence, what we are before nature, ‘inside’, that gives rise to the appearance things are, can only be a mystery, to a fly resting on a flower.

Being, the silence upon which it is all drawn, endless and endlessly.

What is endless upon which nothing is written?

I’ll have the endless please …

© Mark Berkery … CLICK any picture to enlarge in a new tab …

*

To Laugh About …

P1090839 - Mark Berkery

 

P1090801 - Mark Berkery

 

P1090840 - Mark Berkery-001

 

With the rain and cold of this winter came the Kookaburra family to the garden, the male and female. Mates alone, with the young from last season gone to find their own place to live and die.

I suspect a shortage of food around these parts, suburbia, where people keep tidy gardens. It seems to be a rule of mind, with the occasional refreshing wildness.

These birds know where their bread is buttered, a plethora of small lizards to be found scuttling around my garden, plucked mid-stride. Gulped.

Every now and then a sudden raucous noise hits my ears, the distinctive ‘ HA HA HA, HO HO HO, HAHAHA’. Well, something like that.

They remind me of the practicality and diversity of nature, and to laugh – while they scan the ground for a morsel.

A proper laugh strategically applied can change the pattern or weight of a mind.

Does mind have weight, or is it the gravity of the past that tugs?

© Mark Berkery … CLICK any picture to enlarge in a new tab …

*

Long Night in the Undergrowth

P1030625 - Mark Berkery

A wholly unpredictable nature. Rain or shine, at least the season is reliably that. Mid winter now, just past the shortest day in Oz, and the rain has blessed the earth. Washing all the dryness down and into work with the living of the soil as the basis for the forms of spring to come. And the freshness can be invisibly sensed, just behind the appearance, inside. A clarity above, a functional chattering of other forms below.

The sun lights the morning yellow and clear calling ‘Good Morning’ as it rises above the rooftops. The green alights to the calling light ‘I’m here’, me too … ‘present’ good lord. It is the lord of the morning, when the storm is not, here whatever … A functional lord, of the solar system, solar lord. Having dominion, care for, the children in its influence – us, me and you at the beginning and end …

All we have to do is ‘the work’. To find and establish the only resting place, inside, to observe the wonder of the passing dancers – the other forms of me and you, the colours, the shapes and other senses of things that die, and don’t. It’s what passing is, a movement from visible to invisible and round again. The passed being something else, at the base of it all, you or I.

That’s the way of things here, a cycle of events in form that represent the inner life. A process of detachment through pain, or something more extraordinary – to me, that ends in … peace.

It’s the perception that matters, is realised and actualised, here … it’s a long night in the undergrowth, everybody sees.

Good morning sun … good morning bee.

© Mark Berkery … CLICK any picture to enlarge in a new tab …

*

Dragon Hunt

P1160895_filtered - Mark Berkery

I have been finding a few Dragonfly’s recently, perhaps because of the generally warmer than usual weather, and the new location – a place I haven’t been to for many years. A nearby nature reserve that will soon become a horse track, I am told, so there may be some dung beetles soon to photograph … amongst the many creatures already to be found there.

The site is huge and Dragons can be found all over at different times of day, some by the water where it is clear of trees and brush, some hunt in the fields, some can be found asleep or at rest in the shade where the brush meets the open track, others in the dark shadows. At present there isn’t a ‘best’ spot, maybe as the spring gets on after the winter solstice locations will be more determined – by the nature.

There are many colours of Dragon though few individuals, and getting close to one can take a long time as they are inclined to take flight at the slightest disturbance in their view. Those big eyes are some indication of how sensitive is their sight.  Along with being consummate hunters goes a correspondingly evolved survival instinct.

Stillness is the key to observing these wonderful creatures, of mind and body, and the approach takes time and demands an attitude of respect for best results, in my experience.

© Mark Berkery … CLICK any picture to enlarge in a new tab …

*

Nectar of The Gods

P1080367 - Mark Berkery

P1080360 - Mark Berkery

P1080300-001 - Mark Berkery

P1080342-001 - Mark Berkery

P1080389-001 - Mark Berkery

P1080358-001 - Mark Berkery

P1080291 - Mark Berkery

Amrit, ambrosial immortalising food of the gods, fit for an ant – for if there is a god it is surely in all things, without exception, or the creation is flawed. Notice any holes in the fabric of your universe lately? Well, let’s not go into that too much …

*

It was Garuda, bird – king, who stole the Ambrosia of the gods in order to release himself and his mother from enslavement to the snakes – or snake energy. He had to perform impossible feats in order to do so. And so impressed with his character was Vishnu that he made Garuda free forever.

It’s an interesting myth from Indian lore. And like all myth it has truth behind it. He had to take it.

Have you performed impossible feats lately?

*

A site that is good for some creatures can be enhanced for macro shooting by the addition of a source of food, as with the honey for the ant here. Nothing wrong with enhancing the scene if everyone concerned benefits.

A little nectar goes a long way.

© Mark Berkery … CLICK any picture to enlarge in a new tab …

*

Portraiture

P1230054_filtered

P1230081_filtered

P1230051_filtered-001

… to portray – the art of rendering ‘some-thing’ in the best possible light, according to accepted practice, by intuition – an untethered understanding reached through experience by letting go the already known – sifting gold from muck. Photography is just one medium for such expression, writing is another, gardening no less so.

Everybody is an artist, has something they excel at, if they have been lucky enough to find or been guided to it in these dense materialistic times. Some are more ‘artistic’ than others, doesn’t deny anybody’s art. Anyone who hasn’t found it is holding on to some mental construct of what they are.

The image is unreal, any image, only a representation of the thing, any thing. And representations change, being of things that die. Thing is to see the fact and go with the reality of change rather than hold to the known, old and worn. A representation is always of something passed, or past.

One such representation, bordering on the solution to finding the lost art, is to stand on a diving board in the dark of night with the intention of jumping in the water. Feel the fear? There are others, more fitting to some than many.

The simple solution is inside, looking past the sensation that is the basis for meditation, to no-thing – that has no image. It’s no big deal, it is where is after dreaming stops, from awake to asleep – a place inside.

Trick is to not ‘fall’ asleep, but go to sleep, looking to see. Just never mind the imagery on the way.

Or enjoy it but don’t hold on to what passes, as everything does.

© Mark Berkery … CLICK any picture to enlarge in a new tab …

*

Of a Certain Nature

P1070567 - Mark Berkery-001

An unusual place to find a Huntsman, atop a flower, in the morning.

 

P1070575 - Mark Berkery-001

A big Drone fly landed on a nearby flower. Standoff, in my mind …

 

P1070580 - Mark Berkery-001

But didn’t get caught by this spider, this time …

 

… gardening, and how not to do it.

Until recently my attitude to the garden has been of a minimalist approach; determine, sometimes intuit, location, plant a selection, water and feed – with little to no regard for the suitability of the earth it happens on and in. Lazy, yes, being a poor study of things I don’t ‘see’ the need for.

Then something happened, I stopped wasting energy in one area of my life, thinking I ‘should’ apply myself where I just didn’t fit, and that energy became available for other things. So I began to look deeper into where I do apply myself without the ‘should’.

The notion of growing a certain plant, for its wonderful flowers, slowly grew in my mind and I found myself thoroughly involved in researching how to do it the best I can – not unlike a root-bound seedling released from its constraining pot and transferred to fertile soil.

Of course, because nothing is certain in a world of change, it may not turn out as I envisage but I will have done my best – and that’s what counts, the doing, not the end.

I still love the little creatures, when they show themselves, but maybe I will focus a little more on the flowers that feed them – in all their ways.

When the garden’s soil develops and spring comes around.

… not the end.

© Mark Berkery … CLICK any picture to enlarge in a new tab …

*

A Sleepy Dragon

P1080164-001 - Mark Berkery

P1080155-001 - Mark Berkery

P1080160-001 - Mark Berkery

 

It’s all … a gift, or a curse, depends on how you look at it. But the fact is whatever it is today is gone tomorrow, so there’s no point fretting it – whatever ‘it’ is. Making it less a curse, or a gift, and more simply what it is.

*
I know, easy to say. But it can also be ‘done’ if done enough. Letting go is the key, not holding on to what’s inside – though it may appear outside – by thinking too much or getting emotional about ‘it’. Whatever it is.

*
This sleepy dragon doesn’t give a … Lying there, resting in the hot afternoon sun, takes no notice of me – as long as I am careful, considerate of its sensibilities, discernible as what my own would be if …

*
… I were a dragon.

*
© Mark Berkery … CLICK any picture to enlarge in a new tab …
*

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 7,218 other followers