Monday, November 13, 2023

"Trees are poems ... "

The usual view. Left arrow marks my junipers, right points to the fallen one. Note sign on left.

Late yesterday afternoon we visited the two Rocky Mountain Junipers I'm following this year. It was a perfect time to go—cool, surprisingly calm, with low golden light.

We started on Trail 1 as we always do, in spite of the recently added sign. Leashes are now required on this trail. Neither of us like them so we went without, yet we traversed the next fifty yards safely! ;) Then we left the trail to travel cross country across slabby limestone, making a beeline for the junipers.

The Fallen One.
My junipers against the sky.
“Trees are poems that the earth writes upon the sky.” Khalil Gibran

I came upon this by way of Joran Viers, City Forester of Albuquerque, and Michael H., who sent it my way. Gibran likely was thinking of deciduous trees with large intricate canopies rather than the small dense "canopies" of our tough little junipers. Yet poems were worth considering, and I looked through the lens to check.

Junipers poem viewed from the west in golden light.
Limber Pine poem with a bit of a breeze.
Lots of juniper berries ... a nice ending to the season.
As we continued east cross country, I discovered we weren't alone. We were being carefully watched by a pronghorn buck and his companions.
They were much more interested in us than we were in them.
Off to more interesting things (click to view).
This is typical pronghorn behavior here ... watch for awhile then amble off. My field assistant has no interest in animals this large, being programmed to hunt small burrowing rodents (basenji genes). And I'm more interested in plants. So we too ambled off, heading west back to the car through the prairie. The grasses were beautifully backlit, and it was hard to keep moving.
Indian Ricegrass, Achnatherum hymenoides.
Curled seed tails of Needle-and-Thread, Hesperostipa comata.
Blue Grama, Bouteloua gracilis (up close below).

This is my contribution to the monthly gathering of Treefollowers, kindly hosted by The Squirrelbasket. Come join us ... it's free, fun, and always interesting.


  1. Beautiful shots with the angled sun. How nifty to see the pronghorns and all the beautiful prairie plants. Love the Gibran message, too.

    1. Thanks Beth ... it was nice to bump into Gibran once again :)

  2. yes all subjects in your photos are poetry. and i love the fallen one :) thanks Thank you for your comment at Michael's ( i see you know his name) yes i followed your Elm link, what a cool post on a city page of some kind.

    1. Hello jozien, hope things are going well. this tree following often makes me look around in a different way. Probably/hopefully helpful.

  3. I adore the name of your blog. Perfect. Beautiful shot of the juniper berries, and the Buck wow!

    1. Hello tz_garden, thanks for visiting. I checked your blog ... wow, looks like you have a botanical garden there in Livermore!

  4. Good pictures. It's always sad to see a toppled tree. xx

    1. I agree, Mike. And that tree otherwise looks so robust healthy! :(

  5. Wonderful photos as always - and beautifully delicate rice grass.
    I see the pronghorn is also known as the American antelope. Certainly looks like it belongs somewhere in southern Africa.
    All the best :)

  6. Lovely photos, and nice to meet the pronghorns. I like the quote from Khalil Gibran, it's very true, especially at this time of year when you can see the complexity of the patterns of the bare branches against the sky

  7. I liked the quote from Khalil Gibran so much I used it as the inspiration for my blogpost today!

    I'm not sure how many of my comments are getting through, as most of the time I'm struggling to sign into Blogspot blogs, despite my own blog being at Blogspot!)