Cactus, Bluebonnets and Prickly Things

By Melinda VanLone | Photos

Apr 06

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I don’t like cactus. I grew up in New Mexico, in the part of the state full of cactus and tumbleweeds. Have you ever fallen into a bed of cactus? It’s not a good time, let me tell you. Brushing up against one of them hurts. Even glancing at one might poke your eye out. Stepping on a nail is less painful than those prickly things.

When I was out hunting bluebonnets last weekend, I came across a batch of them and made sure to tiptoe around it. I don’t even like making noise near them in case it angers them. I took shot after shot of the surrounding countryside. Barn…check. Bluebonnets…check. Old fence…check. Just when I figured I’d captured all there was to see, I looked down.

“Look at me, I’m beautiful too!”

There was the cactus I’d been so careful to avoid, right at my feet. I’d drifted in my search for the right photo and nearly walked right into them. Something about it said “take a closer look”, so I did. I knelt down and clicked. I didn’t even think much of it, just clicked a few shots off. That’s when Biker Dude stopped by (Monday’s post, in case you missed it). I forgot all about the cactus and went on about my day.

Today I was looking back through the photos I took that day, and found this. Other than an awesome shot of my parents, this is probably the best one I took. The cactus that I tiptoed around and ignored turned out to be the coolest photo.

I love how the prickles of the cactus create a mosaic type pattern against the green background. I love the twig mixing with the cactus thorns. I love the bluebonnets splashing their color through the scene. I love the mix of hard and soft. And I love that something I usually think of as horrible and a nuisance, gave me such a smile this morning.

As I focus on the revisions for my current work in progress, I’m going to try to remember this lesson. When I struggle with a scene, and its thorns are poking me in the face and making me think I should just give the whole thing up…maybe that’s just because it’ll turn out to be the most beautiful scene in the end.

I hope so!

 

 

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