Summer’s Green Heart

I can breathe where there is green. Green grows hope. It keeps my heart beating and helps me remember who I am.” – Courtney M. Privett, Faelost

Glancing out the bedroom window overlooking the alleyway, I was struck by the image of two women, walking separately, both tethered to their cell phones, heads down – connected, as defined by 21st century living and a thought occurred to me, connected to what? To work, the endless feeds that distract us, or more hopefully, loved ones – I could also see nature unfolding all around as my eyes alighted upon fully leafed trees eager to share their lullabies on the faint breeze, shading shiny young crows learning how to forage, their crimson throats calling out to the adults when a grub or two was unearthed, as the scent of freshly mown grass filled our nostrils with the promise of endless summer.

Gentle reminders after too many days away from nature myself, prompting me to pack a lunch and head into the park ahead of the second heat wave of a season still clinging to spring. Our favourite spot at the Urban Forest CafΓ© (known in the off-season as the Railway CafΓ©) is always cool, hidden from the main pathways behind a screen of tangled green. After ordering some freshly cooked fries from an always friendly Travis, we settled under an umbrella at a weathered picnic table to enjoy our al fresco lunch. The peaceful trail we love to walk on is still only open on the weekends so we took advantage hoping to do some foraging for dessert. As we approached an area known for its abundance of salmon berries, it looked like other dessert hunters had been there before us until we came across a patch of juicy jewel-like orange berries glistening in the sun. The berries were at their peak, falling into our hands with just a slight touch. After we ate our fill, it was time to make my way home and Terry to his beloved hill at the edge of the forest.

Spending time in nature is like rediscovering paradise, igniting a thirst which has led me to this wooden bench at Barclay Square (here in the West End) underneath a towering green canopy, listening to the sweet sounds of live jazz at the annual Strawberry Festival after indulging in a bowl of scarlet strawberries topped with a scoop of still-cold vanilla ice cream and a dollop of whipped cream on a bed of golden shortcake. There is a wonderful sense of community here, I often run into good friends and neighbours among the leafy shadows in between the stately older homes flanking the flagstones and grass. One of many beautiful summer rituals, summer’s own green heart helps the lost and distracted find a corner of paradise, raining down words for anyone to capture, the taste of strawberries still on my tongue!

I have sat in this beautiful community garden at the edge of Stanley Park (Vancouver, B.C.) with a Mason jar of homemade ice tea to capture words!

A view to the distant mountains of the North Shore from our local community garden here in the West End at the edge of Stanley Park (Vancouver, B.C.)

Sunsets also grow hope and lately, we’ve seen some beautiful ones over Stanley Park (Vancouver, B.C.) from our balcony!


About anotetohuguette

I'm currently blogging from the beautiful West Coast city of Vancouver, British Columbia - a vibrant city by the sea, surrounded by mountains and a very unique urban forest.
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40 Responses to Summer’s Green Heart

  1. calmkate says:

    Lovely photos and sentiments expressed .. devices divide us from nature … we can stroll through the most beautiful setting completely oblivious … glad you took time to indulge πŸ™‚

    Liked by 3 people

  2. KD says:

    Connecting with nature does wonders for the soul.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Shirley says:

    There is the magic in the greens of summer. Browns turn to life, and the scent of new, crowds out the winter. Even the ocean seems to dance its cadence to the movement of the flowers. The breeze, cleansing the pathways of mind, calling forth the memories of a childhood filled with joy.
    Loved this prose and photos.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Summer equals childhood…I’ll never forget those joyous days when the last day of school held such promise…thank you, Mom for your lovely prose and guess what?…there are just-born baby gull chicks for me to watch over, Mama brought them out on a neighbouring rooftop as another beautiful sunset made itself known! See you soon at the Farmer’s Market! X


  4. Tranature - quiet moments in nature says:

    A beautiful green heart you have in this community garden Kim, it looks like a wonderful place to be. Strawberries and jazz sound like a fabulous combination! πŸ™‚πŸ“πŸŽΆπŸ’– xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  5. It sounds like you got your green infusion, Kim. Salmonberries and strawberries and sunshine. I can’t imagine a better afternoon. Much better than staring at a cell phone. ❀

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Quirky Girl says:

    Nature offers us so much more than modern technology ever could, for nothing can ever replace the beauty of a sunrise, the scent of a flower, or a joy of a delicate butterfly soaring through the air. As much as I use electronics, I loathe the fact that we’ve lost so much in the process of becoming increasingly “modern”.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. What a beautiful way to describe the delights of summer. I love those community gardens and those fresh berries. Divine. 🌼

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Beautiful pictures!! Recently, read a book whose first chapter described how we have never been so disconnected with eachother’ and phones indeed have become our besties.Sad.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Ali Grimshaw says:

    Immersing myself in green always brings me back to life. It sounds like you were very present to the joys of your senses on this lovely day. They came through in your writing.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Miriam says:

    What a beautiful post Kim. Nature is so soothing and restful, and yes, especially without the distraction of the phone. Why look down when there’s so much beauty all around us? Loved this. πŸ’™

    Liked by 1 person

  11. markmkane says:

    So beautiful Kimberlee. Now if only the two women who had their heads buried in their phones looked what was around them as you had described, then maybe they could learn to appreciate life and all its splendid scenery much more. Thanks for always posting pictures and magically describing it to us, it makes me look outside my window and appreciate what I see.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. pjlazos says:

    Oh how I agree. The imbalance with the natural world is why the world is on full tilt these days. If everyone would just go for a hike in the woods!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Lovely reflection, Kimberlee! I loved hearing about your adventure.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. If only those two women who were drawn into the bright virtual world look up and take look around them. Yesterday, my son and I were reading the poem – Leisure and we spoke about the joys of taking a walk in the park or playing a real game of tag leaving our mind and body happy in contrast to basking in the glow of screens.
    Enjoyed reading your thoughts, Kim. Enjoy!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much for your lovely words…I’m intrigued by the poem you mention…is this a poem that you have written? The image of you and your son reading together is so beautiful, it encouraged me to take a deep breath…to take some precious time to simply be…

      Liked by 1 person

      • This is Leisure by W H Davies.

        What is this life if, full of care,
        We have no time to stand and stare.

        No time to stand beneath the boughs
        And stare as long as sheep or cows.

        No time to see, when woods we pass,
        Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass.

        No time to see, in broad daylight,
        Streams full of stars, like skies at night.

        No time to turn at Beauty’s glance,
        And watch her feet, how they can dance.

        No time to wait till her mouth can
        Enrich that smile her eyes began.

        A poor life this is if, full of care,
        We have no time to stand and stare.

        I hope you enjoy it!

        Liked by 1 person

      • What a gorgeous poem…I just sent it to my lovely neighbour Huguette…thank you so much for sharing it…it’s a perfect addition to my pages!

        Liked by 1 person

      • So glad you enjoyed the poet’s thoughts. It is a small and very simple poem, but so apt for this generation.

        Liked by 1 person

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