Category Archives: Nature

Early Bird

By Vladimir Brezina

The early bird captures the shot…

Early Bird 1Cape Cod, Massachusetts

Early Bird 2Key Biscayne, Florida

Early Bird 3Start of the 2014 Everglades Challenge, Tampa Bay, Florida

A contribution to this week’s Photo Challenge, Early Bird.

Ephemeral

By Vladimir Brezina

Ephemeral

A contribution to this week’s Photo Challenge, Ephemeral.

Ice on the River

By Johna Till Johnson

Ice on the river

Flow on, river! flow with the flood-tide, and ebb with the ebb-tide!
Frolic on, crested and scallop-edg’d waves!
Gorgeous clouds of the sun-set! drench with your splendor me, or the men and women generations after me!

Walt Whitman, Crossing Brooklyn Ferry

This is quite possibly my favorite poem ever. I once memorized part of it to recite for Vlad’s birthday. It always gives me shivers, in part because Whitman was, literally, talking directly to us, “men and women generations after me”.

But this past February, there weren’t many “crested and scallop-edg’d waves”—only acres of ice floes, bobbing sluggishly in the current. It’s hard to believe that lively, open water will return–but spring is less than a month away!

Ice floes have their own bleak beauty, though, especially during a snowstorm. I recently took a walk along the East River and up alongside the Harlem River. This is what I saw (click any photo to start slideshow):

Squirrels, and Skvirels

By Vladimir Brezina

Begging squirrel

On an overcast, dull winter day in NYC’s Central Park, there is not much color and nothing moves—except squirrels!

(click on any photo to start slideshow)

And who knew that the word “squirrel” was so hard to pronounce? See here—

So, for days now, Johna and I have been saying “skvirel” to each other :-)

Rule of Thirds

By Vladimir Brezina

Another oldie but goodie… The red leaf conforms to the Rule of Thirds, and there is some colorful bokeh in the background—as requested by this week’s Photo Challenge, Rule of Thirds.

The red leaf

Christmas in February

By Johna Till Johnson

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Maggie’s Magic Garden

Last week I did something I’ve been meaning to do for a while: I went to Maggie’s Magic Garden to take a few photos.

Vlad and I had passed this space many times. It’s a community garden, a small, open plot of land surrounded by buildings. As the seasons changed, it provided a lovely glimpse of nature amidst the urban setting.

So I was curious to see what I’d find in midwinter, after the first few snowfalls of the year. I don’t know what  I expected, but it wasn’t what I found: Christmas in February!

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Christmas in February

My favorite part of the Christmas decorations was the homemade creche, with what looked like a bedsheet draping over the figurines. (Also note the angled angel over the manger.)

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Homemade creche

And there were more secular decorations as well…

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Bright candy canes

Alas, I wasn’t able to get into the garden to explore—despite the sign, it was closed when I visited. But it clearly lives up to its description: Magical indeed. I’ll be back there in the spring, to see what magic is afoot then!

Valentine’s Day Symmetry

By Vladimir Brezina

An oldie but goodie—

Happy Valentine's Day!

A second contribution to this week’s Photo Challenge, Symmetry (the first contribution was here).

And, of course, Happy Valentine’s Day!