Secret Yard Gardens

Never before have
the mushrooms come,
having sprung up 
beneath the colors
of the setting sun, 
like harbingers sending word
for the others to follow suit,
to settle in, to family reproduce.
I feel like the searched-for 
hostess, the mortally-cloaked
fairy princess.
Little do the other humans know,
I live to be that escape artist, 
to visit like Alice 
the enchanted kingdoms
among the petals and leaves
and gypsy fungus. 
Even the dog knows
to respect the magic. 

Poem and images ©LauraDenise

Nature Nurtured

toad-eye entrancement
needed memory-loss spell
forgetting those woes 

Forlorn I was,
but Nature won’t have it
for long, 
always intercepting, 
knowing the sure-fire ways
to illicit my dimples;
this time, 
in an unused planter,
my own fairy garden
to behold,

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and if that wasn’t enough, 
the realization 
it was a family 
portraying love. 

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Funny how I always see
the romance between 
two fungi touching

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and how there doesn’t seem 
to be such a thing
as a mushroom 
without the merry,
underfoot fairy
tales in toadstools,
though they wouldn’t actually hold
a toad unless they were magical,
but then again, I am the biggest
believer in that, after all…

unexpected growth
merry mushroom family
unplanted smile sprouts

Faithfully, my family
out-of-doors
takes care of me  
whenever I start to feel
forlorn. 

And my pup, of course.

Poems and images ©LauraDenise

Fungal Reflection

I don’t usually like to know the scientific facts about the subjects I find and photograph in nature, even basic identification. It spoils the wonder and mystery to me, the thrill of all my imagination hatches, the magic, the mysticism, the fantasy, the tales, the divine creation we think we know all about. These are my discoveries; I am the first explorer to ever lay eyes on the new species. Instead of sketching them in my diary, I photograph them; I am both from the future and the past. 

I couldn’t resist though peeking into the portal of cyberspace regarding this spectacular mushroom variety I haven’t seen before (I don’t think…). “Puffballs” they are, supposedly common. And of course, as reading when you are a born lifelong reader tends to go, I read a bit more… They have a poisonous “Death Cap” doppelgänger, well imposter anyway, being the most interesting fact to me. 

These I spotted underfoot between my car and classroom back door going into work the other day. To photograph them meant anyone could be watching and definitely would wonder even more about me. Of course, I risked it all and got down low and took the shot. It was too intriguing in and of itself but also because they were paired and the morning light and shadows were beautiful. I love couplets of anything in nature because I am a romantic. I also champion the overlooked or undervalued in nature, especially weeds and fungi. 

Where to begin with what I could spin from this encounter and image souvenir?…

Two as one
connected, 
shadows merging,
agreed to be
shared,

to increase
the surface area
so the darkness
lightens
in lichen-like
dual-stabilization:
paired.

One absorbs
more sun 

than the other
but feeds
its partner
the light
not so directly;

at times
they reverse roles
when the other 
needs
to shrink
into safety
awhile
and be protected
temporarily.

The world passes by,
so many times before
both cruelly and unknowingly
treading upon them;

others of their kind
turned poisonous,
but these two
remain true
to themselves
and their commitment,

not letting others’
judgement affect 
their joy
or quality of life
and above all
love,

testament to
there being someone
for everyone
and such a connection
vital,
to feel that touch,
to trust…

or maybe I am seeing 
too much 
in these balls
of mushroom puffs
I stumbled upon

on my way
to work
this morn. 

Undertoe

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The white and gold

in the mushroom undertoe

draws me in to that peculiar

texture of spongy foam.

 

Something there is about wild

mushrooms growing

seems magical, mystical;

they seem to harbor a knowing

that we all miss

so busily attending to the non-bliss

of the things deemed more glamorous.

 

For me, though,

I’d rather shrink myself

and stay awhile or so

in the land of fairies and gnomes

and listen all day to the tales of old

before the curse of growing

and learning, being told

to pay no attention to those

mushrooms undertoe.

 

Poem and image ©LauraDenise