Summer Respite

Nothing is more peaceful in the summer than a cypress swamp in the dead heat of day. The stillness is broken only by cicadas harmonizing, peepers chirping, and occasional egrets calling. Nature’s pungent perfume wafts on a random light breeze that gently moves a few lily pads. Sweat drips from my brow onto my camera. I love it! okay

in the duckweed

a gator’s eye twitches…

foraging wood ducks

©️Al W Gallia 2021

Thank you, Lord, for this moment of your peace in our troubled world.

Haiku: Lazy Summer Day

A hot mid-summer day at the beautiful Cypress Island Wildlife Preserve near Lafayette, Louisiana. Not much is stirring on this ‘dog day’ as I walk quietly along, under hanging moss, listening to the cicada chorus in full voice with a random peeper chiming in. It hasn’t rained recently and the earthy smells of sun baked swamp, moss, and duckweed drift heavy in air.

feeding whistling ducks…

a nearby alligator quietly

submerges

©️Al W Gallia

Trickles of sweat run down my neck, but I am happy passing the afternoon capturing nature’s unscripted haiku moments with my mind’s eye and camera. Such moments abound as Serendipity exposes them one by one with each turn in the path. I loose myself in nature,.. some call it ‘forest bathing’.

blazing sun…

the soundless swish

of a gator’s tail

©️Al W Gallia

Finally I am reminded of reality when a mosquito buzzes my face and a nearby owl hoots! A peaceful stillness gradually settles with evening cooling as my day closes with a chug of much needed water and a silent prayer of gratitude to God. In evening’s waning light, a young raccoon ambles across my return path with hardly a sidewise glance and our eyes meet for a brief second. I smile.

A Spring Day

Spring has sprung here in south Louisiana and it is so welcome! As I walk along the gravel road bordering the cypress filled Lake Martin, almost every step exposes another sign of new life! My camera stays at the ready as my eyes search out Mother Nature’s fresh tidbits of color and textures. Wildflowers with their faces turned sunward, greening trees and lotus pads, the calls of nesting egrets and herons, a sunning alligator, and smell of bedding fish overwhelm my senses. Thank you, Lord, for this day!

spring morning…

flooding the cypress swamp

sunlight and birdsong

©️Al W Gallia 2021

The Dead Leaf

One of my greatest joys is wandering along trails in Louisiana’s swamps and woodlands, always with my camera and hiking stick in hand. Meandering and communing with God amidst nature’s solitude and beauty almost always brings my soul the peace, quiet and happiness it seeks. It is winter now and, after several frosts, the deciduous trees and shrubs have shed most of their leaves. A fresh north wind carries the scent of a campfire as it swirls the dry leaves. A single leaf struggles to hold fast to a cypress branch…

a dead leaf

hanging from the bare cypress…

gusting wind

Al Gallia