Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Nature Nerd Wednesdays

Welcome to Nature Nerd Wednesdays, your mid-week nature break to reconnect with the calming, refreshing, and inspiring effects of nature. Take a deep breath and enjoy...

Words from the poet William Wordsworth welcome hikers to the Wallace Falls trail. Lainey Piland photo

April is National Poetry Month, and perhaps no subject has been more thoroughly celebrated and explored in poetry than the subject of nature. Some poems are written about nature itself, while others use nature imagery to illustrate an abstract idea or as a metaphor for happenings in our human lives.

I won't present myself as a poetry expert by any means - most of the stuff just goes right over my head - but in my limited experience, I've found that reading poetry can evoke images and feelings just as beautiful and powerful as if you were gazing upon some spectacular scene in person. Given the prevalence of nature in poetry, I thought it might be fun to focus on a nature poem for this week's Nature Nerd Wednesday. Enjoy Emily Dickinson's "Nature" Is What We See by watching and reading:

"Nature" Is What We See
By Emily Dickinson

"Nature" is what we see—
The Hill—the Afternoon—
Squirrel—Eclipse—the Bumble bee—
Nay—Nature is Heaven—
Nature is what we hear—
The Bobolink—the Sea—
Thunder—the Cricket—
Nay—Nature is Harmony—
Nature is what we know—
Yet have no art to say—
So impotent Our Wisdom is
To her Simplicity.

To celebrate National Poetry Month, consider heading over to the Peninsula between now and June 14th to check out the "poetry walks" at Olympic National Park, where poems will be placed on signs along four hiking trails throughout the park.

Poetry can inspire more thoughtful and insightful nature experiences. The Washington Trails Association has a few suggestions for poetry to take along on your next hike - take a look here.

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