Monday, December 6, 2010

Winter Eagles, Prairie Songs

Even getting close to a Bald Eagle is amazing, the power they emit is wonderful.

Shooting as fast as you can is hard since you want to watch and feel the eagle's spirit.

If you click on these you will see that keen eye better. They winter along the river near me. Today I spotted 54 along a one mile stretch. Many birders travel here to get the chance and see them, they like the open river for a good fish dinner.

Burr oaks have a charm to me, I remember seeing how far I could go hand over hand on their low branches, and how high I could climb. During the summer you don't notice the structure of these great trees hidden under a dense canopy of leaves.

All the farm animals are all furry this time of year, it is really cold out, but I enjoy the adventure to play in it. If the cold remains real low the ponds will ice over and I can put on my ice skates and have even more to do.

A new light I added this year was dragonflies, but they don't show as well as I would like them to. This is the first year in a while that I have decorated inside. I was amazed how much I have accumulated over the years, even after giving away a lot.

A spruce in my yard that I usually decorate to keep up with the neighbors. Everyone shines around here over the holidays, and it is fun to join in.

When summer decides to leave fall struts in with variety in it’s elegance. Fairies dance painting this prairie in different tones, in perfect harmony, it changes from day to day. It is a glamorous view that nature offers to introduce winter. When we feel that first cold breeze we are reminded what is sure to be in store soon.

This is a time when the following year’s destiny may be in the tiniest cluster of seeds or roots with stored foods. Sometimes it is their friend Dormancy who puts some of this wonderful prairie to bed and tucks it in a blanket of snow. Thus begins a season of cleansing, to prepare for a rebirth once the ground warms again.

Huge fires would sweep and clean this prairie in the spring sometimes. This brought in herds of buffalo that liked the sweet new grasses. Oceans of the prairie's new growth were followed by waves of buffalo and other grazers. This pattern worked well for centuries, but it almost came to a complete halt by man in a few decades. It is through massive prairie restoration and grazing needs met that we have rejuvenated our land and herds again.

It is wonderful to sit within a massive herd of buffalo and wonder if they still can remember when they were denizens of this prairie before the people came. Do they hold any animosity having been pushed aside, as many things were to make way for our families? The spiritual exchange is magnificent to be part of. You need to listen to a soft song carried on the tips of the tall grasses and petals of the flowers. Listen for a bleat of the calf talking to its mother, the song of a hawk, the trickle of chirps from the crickets, that gentle song from the centuries. Breathe in the wisdom caressing your face, on a gentle prairie breeze.
Snow flakes dance
On the tip of my tongue
Melting away as quick
As they came to me.


  1. Wow. Amazing you got so close to that Eagle! THAT is incredible!

    Love you tree:)

    Your poem on snowflakes is wonderful.

  2. Hi Steve, Love your decorations --inside and outside... I will start showing off some of ours soon. And those Eagles---Oh My Heart... I'd love to see them. You got some fabulous pictures.

    You asked about my background. I started out as a school teacher. Went into fulltime church work --and did that for about 25 yrs. before retiring. I did it all in the church (Children's Ministries, Youth Ministries, Adult Ministries, Director of Christian Education, etc.). I got my master's in C.E. and went from a diaconal minister to an Ordained Deacon. My last job before retiring was as an Associate Minister. My passion though was in Christian Education.

    Have a great day. It's snowing here.

  3. Stunning photos. I have had that opportunity, finding myself up close and personal with eagles, clicking away as fast as I can, tangled in my straps and trying to keep the kayak pointed in the right direction (and upright) all at once!! Very stimulating. I was introduced to Burr Oaks just this past week when, visiting Texas, I twisted my ankle by stepping on the biggest acorn I'd ever seen in my life!! ~karen

  4. Totally awesome shots of the eagle. The tree looks nice, love those dragonfly lights, I've never seen anything like them. I got my tree up over the weekend too

  5. I think eagles are good omens -- whenever you see one, it's fortunate indeed. Great photos, Steve. And your Christmas decorations are beautiful. :)

  6. Your tree lights and poem are very lovely!
    What an exciting moment to see the bald eagle and photograph beautiful shots...I especially like the composition on the fourth one...Great work and thank you kindly for your visits and comments! Linda

  7. Amazing to see an eagle so closely, Steve. I have never gotten the opportunity to see one of these magnificent birds so close. Thanks for posting the photos. And we are working on our holiday decorations too - outdoor lights are on and tree should be up by the end of this week.

  8. 54 Eagles???? I would be ecstatic just to see one. Incredible photos! I'll never forget on our trip up to the northwest a few years back, seeing an eagle fly next to us as we were crossing a causeway. He was gone before I could get my camera out but that wonderful sight is permanently etched into my brain. Love your Christmas Trees and decorations and I loved reading your post.

  9. I could see an americain eagle before entering in Yellowstone park.
    Wonderful Christimas illuminations !

  10. Steve, these are really amazing pictures of an eagle. Just gorgeous. Loved the dragonfly light photo, too. Your Christmas decorations are beautiful.

  11. LOVE the Eagle!!!
    And this is the first year in a while that you've decorated INSIDE??? BADBADBOY!!!!Hahaaa.....'Bout Time! Looks Beautiful!!

  12. Oh wow, 54 ?? That is just incredible. I can't imagine. Beautiful tree and I love the outdoor lights in your yard, nothing quite like them.

  13. I'm amazed at the eagles shots and how many you saw, that would be awesome!

  14. I love your decorations, Steve; now that was a treat! Thanks for posting! (I did see that little doggy darling got her place in the picture, too!).

    Ok, I checked out that video you mentioned and I was laughing so hard. Nice one, Steve! I must inform you, however, that they are of Austrian decent and not Swiss...the style of their clothing gives 'em away. ;) Haha - thanks for that!

  15. Wow, Steve, 54 Bald Eagles?! How awesome & those pictures are amazingly close up and detailed!!

    I really liked your decorations too... inside and that tree outside is a Perfect one for Christmas lights!! All my boys will be home in 2 weeks and I have so much more to 'dig out' of the basement!! :-)

    Have a Great Day, Steve!!

  16. Wonderful bald eagle photographs, just amazing! And you are right, man's propensity for controlling fires has changed our ecosystems, and not necessarily for the better, but that is very human of us isn't it?

  17. 54 eagles in one day's time! Stunning! I've read that they nest along the bluffs over Lake Guntersville in north Alabama. I've always meant to go up there in the spring.

    Thanks for visiting my blog. I enjoyed reading your comment about the memory of the boy. I especially like the way you often revisit that moment in time. I do the same with memories that are special to me.

  18. Fantastic photos and post.

    There is a lake near us that has periodic visits from eagles. We hope that someday we will get lucky and see one during our hikes.

  19. Wonderful eagle shots, it doesn't look like they were too worried about you. Love the other photos too :O)

  20. Beautiful creatures those Baldies. I was lucky enough to enjoy a pair of young at a cottage the past two summers. They sure do emit power.


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