June 16, 2015
(This is part of a 365 project during my 70th years where I write and illustrate a blog on each day’s gift.)
Almost overnight, our lawn became speckled with round white buttons and golf balls. Actually, they are really mushrooms. Some pretty ones looked like dimpled golf balls. I picked one to look at the underside and it was full of insects eating away at what appeared to be a membrane. Nearby I noticed some unsightly mushrooms that looked like dirty, ugly domes. When I picked one of these, however, I was astounded at how beautiful it was underneath with gills that appeared like hundreds of folded pleats.
With mushrooms and other things, it can be rewarding to look beyond the obvious, to explore what the eye does not see at first. You never know what is hidden. There’s the old cliché about not judging a book by its cover. I learned this as a child when I tried reading some old books with unappealing covers in the family basement and discovered Betty Smith’s A Tree Grows in Brooklyn and Irving Stone’s Love Is Eternal.
This is true also with people. Some appear rather ordinary at first until you get to know them and discover a beautiful, extraordinary person hiding inside. I once had a student who was so annoying, like a gnat. He was always saying the wrong things at the wrong time and disturbing the class. However, when I gave a project assignment, the class and I discovered that he was good at writing original music. One of his classmates said to him, “I didn’t know you were so cool.” I didn’t either.
My gift today was unfolding hidden beauty.