Thimbleweed grows often at the forest edge, where it could have full sun or partial shade or deep shade. It is one of those plants that like the liminal spaces.
This post is about liminal spaces. If you want to read more about the plant and see more photos of it, click here.
It wasn’t until 2012 that I really started paying attention to “liminality”. The phenomenon/occurrence of it fascinated me already, but I didn’t know there was an actual word to describe it. Then I interviewed Dr. Harrison Solow. After that, I saw the liminal in almost all of the time/space places that had always fascinated me most. I’ll find and repost that interview with her soon and link to it here. She’s a fascinating woman who lives a fascinating life. One of her specialty topics as a writer is liminality.
In this Random Nature Connection post, I’m going to talk about my love of the liminal spaces. Not all of those spaces are in nature per se, or at least they’re not all physical locations. But liminality is a natural “thing”. Not everyone notices or pays attention to these places-in-between where boundaries are blurred, and then again, not everyone likes the grey areas. Some prefer definite orientation on one side or the other – a definite yes or no, steering clear of ambiguity.
I like them because of the variety of life that usually exists in such places. I like the ambiguous things, the dichotomies. Probably because I sense a lot of myself in those places.
For those liminal spaces that aren’t physical locations but are instead metaphysical spaces, I like them because of the opportunities that exist only at times like that. Those kinds of places are where the strands in the webs of life are wavering on the pendulum between touching or not, and whether they do makes all the difference in the moments happening next.
This article is about the metaphysical liminal spaces, particularly when it comes to communicating with nature: https://wakeup-world.com/2014/11/28/some-pointers-and-pitfalls-for-talking-with-nature/. I found it very interesting and it puts into words what I’ve never been able to explain.
Here’s a list of liminal spaces I consider to be my favorites. I’d love to hear of yours.
- Between night and day, mostly the mornings just before dawn when darkness is giving way to the light. But then I like to ramble around outside as day is giving way to night, too, so I guess I like them both. I like to hear the different animals moving around or waking up.
- At Water’s Edge- beaches, rivers, ponds and creeks. The edges of these places are very interesting to me because of the life that lives where the two meet. Some dabble in both, some prefer to keep wet feet and never venture to the dry ground, and some never actually touch the water.
- In the forest, on the lower part of a mountain before it becomes ground level
- At the edge of waking or falling asleep
- Where mountains meet field or valley, although the exact spot where this happens is sometimes thick and brushy and hard to get through. I don’t like that specific cluttered place so much, but do like the approach to the space where there is both mountain and valley, or forest and field.
- Just before autumn, when the angles of the sun’s rays cast light a particular way that tells me fall soon will arrive.
- Just before a rain after a long dry spell.
- The moon while in Horns of Isis phase – showing both the shadowed part and the illuminated crescent at the same time.
- The moment as comprehension begins but before fully recognized, after struggling with a difficult concept (I like witnessing this moment in others. as well). And this one has a dark side, as well – when comprehension of something unpleasant begins to dawn… and while I don’t “enjoy” this side of it, the space is still fascinating to me.
Random Nature Connection
This post was a Random Nature Connection post. Please join me and link to your own blog post about this topic or this picture.
Previous Random Nature Connection Posts
Here are the previous Random Nature Connection posts:
- 1rst Friday – water (photo of water dripping)
- 2nd Friday – planning ahead (photo of sunset)
- 3rd Friday – resistance to change (photo of ice shard lifting rock)
- 4th Friday – abundance (photo of farkleberry)
- 5th Friday – force to be reckoned with (photo of tractor)
Predator and Prey, or the hunter and the hunted is a common theme throughout my fiction writing. No Qualms, one of my short stories (free at most retailers) is about about a predator/prey relationship. Symbiosis, my first finished novel, not published yet, deals with predator/prey relationships and the balance of energy among life on earth, sometimes symbolic and often outright. Many of my flash fiction stories (I have twitterfiction and 100-word flash stories) are also dealing with this same dynamic. This is a strong theme that runs through most of my fiction and is strongly influenced by life in the wild Ozarks where we live. My first published novel, First Hunt, also has a predator and prey theme to it. I guess it's just part of my nature.
Wild Ozark is 160 acres of beautiful wild Ozark mountains. I call what I do "nature farming" because the land produces, all by itself, the shagbark hickory trees, ferns, moss, ground-fall botanicals, and the perfect habitats for growing and stewarding American ginseng. I'm co-creating with Nature - all of the things I use to make the Fairy Gardens and Forest Folk, the bark we harvest for Burnt Kettle's shagbark hickory syrup, are produced by nature without my input. This land is my muse for inspiration when it comes to my writing, drawing, and photography. It's truly a Nature Farm.
About the voice behind this blog, Madison Woods
I'm a creative old soul living way off the beaten path with my husband in the wild Ozark Mountains. Besides homesteading, growing plants & making crafty things and newsletters, I write books and stories. My rural fantasy fiction, written under the pen name, Ima Erthwitch, usually takes place in a much altered Ozarks.