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 Natural Awakenings Lancaster-Berks

The Sweet Tapestry of Summer

Jun 30, 2023 09:30AM ● By Marlaina Donato
Sweet Tapestry of Summer

maria t hoffman/

July is a heady mix of peak temperatures, sustenance from the soil and inspired invitations to make lasting memories. For gardeners, it is a lilting time of fruition in between rounds of hard work when one’s efforts can be harvested, eaten and appreciated. Summer’s apex brings wildflower tapestries woven with cricket-song and evenings punctuated by rolling thunderstorms, but it also can be a time for us to take a deep dive into the miracle of interconnectedness.

Visiting the local farmers market is an opportunity to be mindful of all that goes into our shopping bags and bellies: rain, sunlight, nitrogen-rich snowmelt and the vital fertility of topsoil. We can see everyday people in a different light, especially Earth-conscious farmers who choose to be birthing partners of the land. 

Taking a walk outside can remind us that no life would be possible without the near-magical, unseen mycelium network beneath our footsteps. Summer’s delicate balance of elements ensures abundance, and we have a sacred opportunity to be part of that equilibrium. Each of us is a link in the chain of humans co-creating within the symbiosis of all other living things. Will we take away from this balance or add to it?

Adding to it does not require hours of time or money, but the motivation to make simple decisions for the greater good such as leaving part of the lawn to grow for the winged ones or choosing an eco-friendly refillable water bottle over single-use plastic. Showing a child how to keep a nature journal can foster lifelong connections with the Earth.

We do our part when we joyfully become part of the landscape—witnessing, observing and allowing nature to go about her business. Making time for languid appreciation contributes to self-nourishment, something that is also vital to the whole. How many avian voices can you hear at sunset? How many colors can you find in a changing mural of clouds? The season of plenty offers a harvest of beauty.

Marlaina Donato is an author, visionary painter and composer. Connect at