Wednesday, July 30, 2014


Three beautiful birds bring their songs for you to enjoy. 

Click on the bird's name to hear its song or call; 
from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.

Photographs by Richard Havenga

Sandhill Crane 

Bay-breasted Warbler

Photo Locations:

1. Goodwillie Environmental School (Goodwillie) Ada, Michigan

2. McCarthy Lake - Grattan Township, Kent County Michigan

3.  Home Woods - Cannonsburg, Michigan

Monday, July 28, 2014


Near sunset,
the end of this day
settles into the foothills;
gathers long shadows
that will ease its
into the night.
©  2014  Richard Havenga

Photo Location

Hatchet, Wyoming

Friday, July 25, 2014


I find it
particularly pleasing
that poem,
and prayer,
and praise
all begin
with the same letter.

I want 

my poems to be 
silent prayers
of praise.

©  2014  Richard Havenga

You may also like: Proposal "P" - February 19, 2014

Wednesday, July 23, 2014


Photo Location:  Pickerel Lake Park - Kent County,  Michigan

Yellow Pondlily - Nuphar polysepalum 

Monday, July 21, 2014


feathered filaments
illuminated by dreams
waiting for release

©  2014  Richard Havenga

Photo Location:  Parnell,  Michigan

Meadow Goat's Beard (Salsify) - Tragopogon pratensis

Thursday, July 17, 2014

The Path

A large, blue sky is
ruffled by small, white clouds.
A large, Sugar Maple is
dressed in spring green leaves.
A warm, May morning
invites me outside, again.

My comfortable Merrill® hiking boots
carry me to unexpected treasures.

My dependable Canon® camera
captures a fraction of the feast.

My trusted Creator-God

leads the way to these precious gifts.

I believe in my heart and soul,
that I am on the right path.

©  2014  Richard Havenga

Photo Locations:

1. Townsend Park - Kent County,  Michigan
2. & 3. Home Garden - Cannonsburg,  Michigan
4. Tin Cup,  Colorado

Monday, July 14, 2014

When Clouds Talk to Mountains

When clouds talk to mountains, 
when they caress their stone shoulders,
What is the conversation like?
Are they communicating?
Do they reach an understanding?

"You can count on me, 

I will always be here. "

"I am only passing through,

I will never see you again"

Are the trees thinking:
"What are their words like?
What are the words made of?
Water vapor or stone?"

Which is best?

The dependable permanence
of the mountains?
The forgiving flexibility 
of the clouds?

Can this dialogue 
be heard in heaven; 
just above the clouds?

Listen deeply.

Between the clouds
and the mountains
and the trees,
is a song that 
will be sung
for a millennium.
©  2014  Richard Havenga

Photo Locations:

1. Glacier National Park,  (Glacier)  Montana  (Montana

2. Rocky Mountain National Park, (Rocky) Colorado (Colorado)

3. Grand Teton National Park (Teton) Wyoming (Wyoming

Friday, July 11, 2014

one hundred thousand

An early sun
climbs into July,
warming the air
among these trees.

leaf blades
on this towering
begin to quiver
in the fresh breath
of morning.

Then the breeze
holds its breath.

The petioles pause;
firm in their flatness,

Now the wind returns
to repeat the wavering,
to resume
the green flags fluttering.

The curved teeth
along the margins
biting the wind.

to the sound 
of their own 
©  2014 Richard Havenga

Photo Locations:

Grattan Township, Cascade Township - Kent County,  Michigan  (Michigan

Eastern Cottonwood - Populus deltoides

Thursday, July 10, 2014

The Approach

night is approaching,
wants to ask dusk for a dance;
she is not ready

©  2014  Richard Havenga

Photo Location:

Hatchet,  Wyoming  (looking west to the Grand Tetons)

Monday, July 7, 2014

"The Wind in the Willows" - Excerpt

"The Rat was a self-sufficing sort of animal, rooted to the land... still he could not help noticing what was in the air, and feeling some of its influence in his bones.

It was difficult to settle down to anything seriously, with all this flitting going on. Leaving the waterside,where rushes stood thick and tall in a stream that was becoming sluggish and low, he wandered countrywards, 

crossed a field or two of pasturage already looking dusty and parched, 

and thrust into the great realm of wheat, yellow, wavy, and murmurous, full of quiet motion and small whisperings. 

Here he often loved to wander, through the forest of stiff strong stalks that carried their own golden sky away over his head--

a sky that was always dancing, shimmering, softly talking; or swaying strongly to the passing wind and recovering itself with a toss and a merry laugh."

Excerpt from: The Wind in the Willows  © 1908, Published 1913  (Chapter 9: "Wayfarers All")

by Kenneth Grahame  (1859 - 1932) 

Photography © 2013, 2014  Richard Havenga  

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

The Promise II

Imagine January

14 inches of snow on top of 14 inches of ice. Below the ice, five feet of 34° water. Below that, 14 inches of black silt. Below that, in the firm bottom of the lake, the dormant root of the White Water Lily.

how long
can it hold
the promise
while buried
under silt?

rising from
the black bottom
of the lake
through cold,
dense water,

surging unseen
through dark water,
a soft green rope
climbing toward
the light

how many weeks

how many
cold water days
spent searching?

now, flat, floating flags
of glossy greenness,
rounded to perfection,
precede the purity
of flowers, 

finally emerging;
plump, moist buds
break the surface,

smooth fingers
eager to deliver
the promise,

ready to release
the long-held

to display 
His glorious splendor,

to return again
as promised,

to reflect
the beauty
of love and light
to the world,

to rise
from the
murky darkness,

to reproduce,
and recreate
on earth,

soft petals
arching like
new moon crescents,

silently drawn
                                by the pull    
                                of a promise fulfilled.

©  2014  Richard Havenga

You may also like: The Promise - May 19, 2013

Click on photos to enlarge.

Photo Locations:

Pickerel Lake,  Kent County,  Michigan

McCarthy Lake,  Kent County,  Michigan 

Lilley Lake,  Newaygo County,  Michigan

Freedom Park,  Naples Florida