Tag Archives: Lightning

Beauty Just Is.

apple tree

Emily Dickinson said, “Beauty is not Caused. It Just is.”

One of the most heartbreakingly beautiful sights I have seen in a long while was a lightning blasted apple tree. Though half of her body was gone to age, or to disease, the remaining trunk stood tall and held the limbs that sprang from her side. The half that was gone provided a stump to lean back on when we visited. Where the lightning had stung the bark was scared black but shone in the sun as if it was polished. In the spring brave blossoms would appear on her remaining limbs. In the summer leaves provided shade while the blossoms filled out to become sweet apples. In the fall her leaves would turn golden while her fruit would ripen. Her winter glamour was her position as a sentinel at the top of hillside. Who knows her story? Was she the last of an orchard? Was she a memorial to someone’s beloved? How can we not see her beauty?

How do you see or observe beauty around you? Do you see the extraordinary you find around you in the commonplace? Do you have an “apple tree” in your life that is beautiful by your standards?

When Lightning Strikes Twice


there is nothing delicate about lightning
or a cancer diagnosis
both seem to fall from the heavens
flash a sharp acrid smell,
rip apart the sky, our world
blind us
knock us senseless
then comes the thunderclap,
ricochets, reverberates, echoing
down to the core of our being.

once hit by lightning we never forget the smell,
the rush of adrenaline
or the lack of oxygen to our brains.

once hit by lightning we forget
our bodies are a hummingbird’s kiss
frosty puffs of breath, a buffalo standing in the snow

once hit by lightning we must remember
the sentinel apple tree charred by a bolt
still sprouts new life, grows sweet fruit.

there is nothing delicate about lightning
or red zippers of cancer scars
both are heaven’s clarion call for fierce grace
welcome angels sow miracles while
we rest in the palm of God’s hand.
We must whisper a wish to a butterfly
gaze at a little girl dancing with a firefly
become a shadow which runs across the grass
lose itself in the sunset
yet greet the roll of thunder come again.