Lively northeasterly winds under light cloud cover stir the usual dust. Today is different. Noticeable amounts of water vapor lend substance to aromas of sage and soiI. Ranch livestock gather nervously noses to the prairie winds. Clouds, wind, and humidity on the Llano Estacado plain are reliable indicators of rain brewing over the Manzano Mountains to the west. Ranchers, farmers, and city folk alike entreat providence to spill some of nature's precious lifeblood across their sunbaked domains.
Rain quickens the heartbeat of the prairie. It engages subterranean beetle larvae to create calligraphy, albeit while searching for cellulose food sources. Rivulets of storm water runoff form sand eddies and leave behind artful alluvial patterns. Ornate Box Turtles venture onto the plain to deposit eggs into nests scraped into the softened soil. Insects renew acquaintances with flowers. Silver Sagebrush gives the chapparal an extra sheen. The joyous yellow of sunflowers punctuates the revived biome amid emerald green carpets of Broom Snakeweed.
Life on the Llano Estacado tablelands is by design on a spiral path, which winds unendingly from dearth to plenty and chaos to harmony and back again. Picture for a moment the physical attributes of a spiral. Find them in the fearsome beauty of a tornado, the wondrous spokes of ever-expanding galaxies, the rain-wrapped fury of outer bands in hurricanes and the miraculous spiral arrays of disc florets in a sunflower. Allow such spirals to guide your journeys to spiritual introspection and then open your heart and mind to boundless flights of imagination and discovery.
Ilija Lukić 2013
|Life Is A Never-Ending Spiral (helianthus annuus)|
|Old Man Thistle|
|Bee Fly Heaven|
|Broom Snakeweed Carpet (gutierrezia sarothrae)|
|No Fear (pituophis catenfer sayi, aka Bullsnake)|
|Cautious Optimist (terrapena ornata ornata, aka Ornate Box Turtle)|
|Silver Sagebrush Chapparal (artemisia filifolia)|
|Beetle Larvae Calligraphy|
|Tree Cholla Rose (cylindropuntia imbricata)|