by Liseli Haines
Mohawk Valley Meeting
In the warm evenings of summer, we like to go on walks down the road to see the fireflies that make the long grass of the meadow sparkle with their twinkling lights. As the season progresses the fireflies go higher into the trees at the edge of the meadow and light up the trees in their random patterns. I remember thinking that it looked like twinkling lights on a Christmas Tree. The beauty and wonder bring me joy.
But when did I, or my ancestors, start to be reminded of Christmas tree lights by fireflies and stop being reminded of fireflies by twinkling Christmas tree lights? Do the lights on the Christmas tree remind us of drops of water on a branch when the sun comes out after a rainstorm or do those sparkling drops remind us of the electric lights on a tree? Does the sprinkle of powdered sugar on a cake remind us of the frost on the grass on a crisp autumn morning or the other way around? Has our culture brought us so far from its connection to the Earth that the simple joys of the seasons and the land, like fireflies and raindrops, remind us of culturally learned parts of our lives rather than the other way around?
I, for one, am noticing those patterns of thinking and turning it around so that I can glory in the parts of my life indoors as beautiful examples of what is happening on the land.