The Ugliest Mushroom

I’m back in the woods for the first time all summer. 

As the sun sets, the children gather burrs to make the roof of a fairy house, and my neighbor and I discuss the invention of Velcro arising out of viewing these burrs under magnification.

The burrs hook and cling to anything near them.  Relentless, intense, and desperate.  I love the shameless audacity of a burr.  I need you!  I won’t let you go! 

“They’re just awful,” my friend reminds me“Just wait till the fall when you can’t get them out of your hair.” 

Meanwhile, mushrooms decorate the forest.  I remember believing that little gnomes lived within them.

My daughter finds this red one that seemed to appear overnight.  We take pictures as evidence.

Red Mushroom.  Home for a Gnome? 

My friend points out the ugliest mushroom we’ve ever seen.  It’s probably poisonous.

The Ugliest Mushroom

I kinda like this mushroom.  Awful burrs and ugly mushrooms.  Ugly:  repulsive and unpleasant.  That’s only one way to see them.  Even the ugly has something to give if you examine it the right way.  Burrs give us Velcro and this ugly mushroom catches the setting sun. 

It’s beautiful out here in the woods. 

Journal:  Yes, nature has some ugliness to it.  What’s an ugly natural thing?

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  1. The ugly mushroom reminds me of the Skin Horse from The Velveteen Rabbit. When something is old and drab, perhaps someone cherished it beyond its physical appearance. I once accepted a Bluetick Coonhound, in order to spare him being shot. He came from GA to MO and was not pretty to say the least. He never was pretty; he was BEAUTIFUL as the Skin Horse was beautiful. Welcome back to the woods!