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Saturday, October 30, 2010

Reminder: 30 (Thirty) days hath November

Patricia Youngquist uses words and images to tell stories about her passions. Based in New York, she currently is authoring a series of nature books on birds of the city. Now in Apple’s iBooks store @

Tonight is the last Saturday in October. October, the tenth month of the year in the Gregorian Calendar, every year ends on the same day of the week as the month of February. 

This fact has no bearing on this particular posting except that while endings are inevitable, they don't have to be rushed. 

Tonight's eve of Octobers end is also called Corn Night, and with the promise of tomorrow's celebration of Halloween, reminds me, that although with next week's clock (November 7th) change back to standard time, the days will not be getting longer: they are in danger of becoming increasingly shorter. 

Rather a pumpkin is smashed to smithereens on this mischievous Corn Night, or lovingly taken down on Halloween tomorrow, or within the next few days to come, we will have to be vigilant to hang on to all traces of living each of Autumn's moments - or any moments in time for that matter.
I am not one to use the "we" pronoun when blogging, or when essay writing, as who am I to assume how others may or may not feel, but, I am fairly certain that most people feel with the end of October, comes Christmas. The stores will not let us enjoy November's offerings, rather they will bombard us with jingle bells.

Of course retail stores are not the only culprits to the 'rush-the-moment' syndrome. The mid-term elections are (counting today) a full four days away, November 2nd, 2010. Yet with nearly every murmur uttered on the radio by a pundit, and with nearly every political opinion that finds its way to the printed page, today might as well be falling in the year of 2012.

This rush-the-clock rhetoric disturbs me. I find myself wild with the pressure of what I have done and what I have failed to do in both my personal and professional life.

Fortunately, I have my urban garden, to teach me about the passing of things. My Continus Coggygria (Smokey Bush), a shrub that I have blogged about in a pervious post when it had its brilliant burgundy leaves, now has an array of leaves in rich burnt oranges and yellows. 

An image of this will soon be a part of my collection of invitations, event program covers and note-cards which I will announce in my blog. My Rubus calycinoides continues to be a diva, as she poses herself in front of the Smokey Bush, with her cascading "mane" of leaves that have turned from a rich green into brilliant reds, golds, and oranges. She looks great and seems to know it.

I on the other hand, am an impatient soul, but my chair in my garden - positioned in front of an ever stretching vine - waits patiently for me to sit, to breathe, and to give thanks, even in my grumbliest moments. My trees, shrubs, plants, and herbs wait daily for me to recall Teresa of Avila's words:

Let nothing disturb thee;
Let nothing dismay thee;
All things pass....

"Gardening imparts an organic perspective of time," said William Cowper, the poet, but lately in my case I've been caught up in media and retail time, and have been choking on their rhetoric, forgetting the cliched 'formula', "Stop and smell the roses." Or for now at least remember November. All thirty days of its offerings.


I no longer actively produce event program covers, invitations and the types of greeting cards described here or on my website but arrangements might be able to be made under certain circumstances. My focus is on the Words In Our Beak book series, pictured below...


...whose stories are told from the point of view of Cam, a female cardinal, whose photo is on the cover of each book. Words In Our Beak’s goal is to open readers to a simple understanding of the winged world and their environment. Set in my rooftop urban garden in New York City. Words In Our Beak is directed to children and adults who are curious about birds, and want to learn about them from a unique perspective. The books include hundreds of images of flora and fauna, links to movies, as well as to informative narratives that have been created by the author.

Please click here to go to my blog post that provides details as to where you can get these books.

Additionally,  I have rendered some images from these books into other formats and they are available via Fine Art America (FAA). Some of my other photographs (Black & White Collection, Kaleidoscopic Images and the famous Mandarin duck who visited NYC) can also be found on my FAA pages.

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