Pollinating butterfly

I wasn’t planning to take any photos on this morning’s dog-walk, but I couldn’t resist the sight of a butterfly pollinating flowers alongside the usual handful of bees. Even on mornings when I’m not planning to take any photos, I have my everyday-use camera in my purse, within easy reach. You never know when or where there might be butterflies.

Grasshopper on flower

The world, it turns out, is full of such serendipity. I wasn’t planning to take any photos across from the Starbucks in Waban Square, but when I saw a single butterfly dancing around flowers that were within easy shooting distance, I walked a few feet out of my usual way, Reggie happy to sniff a few steps this way rather than that. While taking a handful of butterfly shots, I spotted a grasshopper sitting atop the same cluster of flowers: an unforeseen bonus. Had I not taken a few steps this way rather than that, I’d never have seen it.

Some might argue that looking at the world through a viewfinder narrows your vision: there is so much that lies outside your perceptual frame, you run the risk of missing the proverbial forest for the trees. But I say that carrying a camera encourages a depth of vision: zeroing and zooming on one small thing, you see another and another. William Blake was right, and he didn’t even own a digicam. The whole world dwells in a grain of sand, and all of heaven hides in a wildflower.