The Great Persimmon That Surpassed All Others

(Not a robin.  A bluebird in the persimmon tree)

It’s been sunny and spring-like here at the Doublewide Ranch—the kind of weather that makes me want to do little but dream and drowse in the sun. So it seems a bit wrong to post dark pictures taken during one of the countless snows we’ve had this winter, but I was amused watching this robin (pictured below) in our persimmon tree, so perhaps you will be, too.

(I do apologize for the poor quality of the shots—the lighting was terrible and the robin was well beyond the reach of my limited-distance lens, but I decided to share it anyway.)

We’re happy that we ended up leaving so many persimmons on the tree this fall because during the snowstorm, it was alive with birds—cedar waxwings, robins, woodpeckers, bluebirds, and mockingbirds—all glad to find the sweet fruit at a time when such was scarce. I watched one particular robin, who drew my attention because he was jumping up and down. Although there were persimmons within easy reach (right in front of him!) he was utterly focused on just one persimmon—the one hanging well above his head. It was at least four inches above him (it looks closer in the photo), so he had to leap up to reach it. And leap he did, over and over.

I laughed out loud and said to him (well, yes, I do talk to birds), “Hey, Mr. Robin, why don’t you just eat the ones you can reach more easily?? Look—right in front of you!”  But he didn’t listen—he never took his eyes off The Great Persimmon That Surpassed All Others.

Although I laughed at Mr. Robin, I couldn’t help but realize that there have been times that I was guilty of the same narrow vision. You might remember my post about looking for meteors. Nothing wrong with looking up, of course, but it’s important to remember what my friend, ClairZ so wisely said in the comments:

“…even while we are waiting for that one perfect moment–the meteor streaking through the sky–we are surrounded by the blessings of loving family and wondrous nature. If only we remember to look around and see.”

Indeed. I’m going to remember that—to not get so focused on what I don’t have that I lose sight of what I do. Let’s hope my friend, Mr. Robin somehow discovers that, too. 🙂

Heaven is under our feet as well as over our heads. ~~ Henry David Thoreau

He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has.  ~~Epictetus


14 Responses to “The Great Persimmon That Surpassed All Others”

  1. sweetflutterbys Says:

    It is so easy to get caught up in things and not see what blessings we have all around.

    Beautiful pictures!

  2. clairz Says:

    Well, Beth, what a sweet post! I kind of like that the robin got what he was focusing on.

    Now I think I’ll go out and sit in the Beth Rocker on the porch and do a little springtime dreaming and drowsing.

  3. Darla Says:

    Absolutely beautiful . . . honest and true. “Although I laughed at Mr. Robin, I couldn’t help but realize that there have been times that I was guilty of the same narrow vision.” Maybe Mr. Robin knew that we could all use a little reminder… 🙂

  4. betsyfromtennessee Says:

    OH what a terrific post, Beth… That Robin represents all of us at one time or the other… We sometimes have that same narrow vision that Mr. Robin had—instead of seeing the things all around us, and maybe finding an easier way of doing things.

    BUT–there’s another way to look at that situation… Sometimes God wants us to reach for the stars, to step out of our box and do things a harder way… For some reason, Mr. Robin saw something in that persimmon that he didn’t see in the ones nearby…. Do WE take the harder path sometimes –if we know that it leads to something much better????

    Great food for thought….

  5. Nancy Says:

    Oh, Beth, your pictures fill me with hope! Thank you!

  6. Jayne Says:

    It’s so very easy to get focused on what we DON’T have isn’t it? :c) Love this story and the reminder included. xoxo

  7. Pat Says:

    I love the quality of the pictures. They look otherworldly. The quotes are wonderful as well.

  8. Martha Says:

    I tend to miss the forest for the trees, now and again; I think we’re all guilty of that at times. We get caught up in so many things in life that we sometimes lose sight of what’s right in front of us. So I can certainly understand Mr. Robin 🙂

    Thank you for another lovely post, and the reminder that goes with it!

  9. Jes Says:

    Beautiful robin pictures! And I don’t blame him for wanting the Great Persimmon 🙂 But a lovely reminder nonetheless!

  10. Debi Says:

    That reminds me of one of my favorite quotes: “The best way to have what you want, is to want what you have.”

    Of course, I still forget about that persimmons that’s right there in front of me.

  11. Rider Says:

    All your writing is wonderful, Ms. Blue, but this posting is especially so. Here you weave words and pictures together to illustrate the Stoic philosophy of Epictetus (quoted at the end of your posting).

    After reading your posting, I went looking for my used bookstore version of Epictetus’ “Discourses.” After I found the book and read the highlighted passages, I read your readers’ commments above. Debi sums up his philosophy well enough when she writes, “The best way to have what you want, is to want what you have.” Clairz does too, in the portion of her previous comment which you quoted in your posting.

    So, it was with surprise that I read Clairz comment above. She points out that the robin, notwithstanding all of Epictetus’ philosophy, gets the Great Persimmon.

    After checking to ensure that Clairz was right, I broke out laughing. Not at, but with you, Ms. Blue. Who would have believed that a robin could confound the great philosophers?

  12. eemilla Says:

    Sometimes it isn’t the persimmon, but rather the pursuit that it is the reward.

  13. The Southern Lady Says:

    I agree with Eemilla about the pursuit sometimes being the reward but more often than not we overlook what is important in our lives while pursuing something not so great. I bet that Robin was very entertaining! I love to watch and try to figure out just what they must think they are doing. Great pictures, too.

  14. Jeff Says:

    “Heaven is under our feet as well as over our heads.” – Henry David Thoreau. One of my very favorite writers. You do have such a wonderful talent for weaving pictures and words into a compelling story, Beth.

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