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Posted By Susan Bernhardt


I wake early in the morning,
and go outside to greet the dawn.
The grass is covered
with tiny diamonds sparkling in the sun.
It's a joyous day!
The air is filled with warmth.
I soak in it.
I wash my face with the first morning dew,
and taste its sweet freshness.

Today is the summer solstice,
There is regrowth,
the earth is green.
Nature has truly come alive
in the buzzing bees,

the blooming flowers and trees,
in the black ants climbing up my pole beans.

I don't take myself so seriously today.
I twirl a few times
among the trees and flowers of my backyard.
The birds sing their songs
in the celebration of the day.
I can hear the laughter of summer.


Susan K. Bernhardt

Originally published in Long Story Short.


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Posted By Susan Bernhardt

Speaking of wood...

Sitting in a Native American clan house a few years back, I was amazed to learn that this large hall was built out of Sitka Spruce and Western Red Cedar.

Awestruck, I reflected on how Picea sitchensis is a tonewood of choice in modern musical instrument construction. Sitka Spruce is sought after by luthiers for buildng violins, guitars, and mandolins. It is also a commonly used material for the soundboards in pianos.

And soundboards made from Thuja plicata are revered by acoustic guitarists seeking the warm, dark sound that is unique to this beautiful cedar.

At the clan house, my imagination carried me away... I was sitting in a vast musical instrument. The Tlingit ceremony had such a wonderful, sonorous quality to it. Were those overtones to their chanting really that strong? Was the entire building actually resonating in sync to the drum beats? I closed my eyes and succumbed to this musical spell.

Some time later, the chanting stopped. The drums went silent. Sadly, I was returned to a world of everyday sounds. Amidst shuffling footsteps and murmurs, I made my way towards the exit. Along the way I tried to touch those beautiful walls as much as possible, as if there were still some lingering vibrations to be savored. Futile as I realized that was, I also knew that somehow I would never forget this magical place.



In The Ginseng Conspiracy, Kay Driscoll's husband Phil is studying to be a luthier.  Phil is oblivious to anything outside the realm of music or guitars. 
Thanks for dropping by.   See you in two weeks.





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Susan Bernhardt


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