Thursday, September 24, 2009

Explosions of Orange


Now is just about the time. Monarch butterflies by the hundreds of thousands will be arriving at Point Pelee near Leamington Ontario. Trees and structures will be covered in orange.

For the last two or three weeks it has been easy to spot isolated specimens with their beautiful patterns of orange and black doing a sort of procrastinator's dance throughout Southern Ontario. Lazy, unhurried, wandering circles, as the autumn sun brings on the richer hues and the cooler nights.

The Park at Point Pelee, the southernmost part of Canada has been an age-old gathering place. If you time it right you will see the immense collections, and then the puff of wind, the unspoken signal and the shocking simultaneous release of the Monarchs to the air, their crossing of Lake Erie without food or rest and their subsequent miraculous excursion to Mexico.

The following spring a trip northward, a depositing of eggs and death.

We love our routines, don't we. To the little child they mean security. To the elderly they mean a discipline to hang on to sense and order. To those of us in the middle often an irritation in the way of innovation or ambition. But the planet is full of routines. They speak of the sovereignty of the Creator. They speak of His reliability. They speak of design working into diverse eventualities.

A little way down the road at Kingsville the Canada Geese are doing the same thing at the Jack Miner Bird Sanctuary. A large stocked field of grain hosts the gray, black and white beauties in the thousands. They need the coaxing of a staff person on a four-wheel drive land rover to take to the air southward. Again, when they lift in unison, a breathtaking shudder of large wings and excited honkings.

The robins, the salmon, the caribou...

They go, but then they come back. Do we not have the same assurance about life and loved ones?

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