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RE: Fw: lotus

Thanks for sharing... and he is soooooo right about their beauty! The
lotus that is-- not those darn leeches...


> I think this may either make all of you reserve the next flight to our
> Eden or
> vow never to set foot.The author is a retired Hort Prof. @ U of Fl.
> SAinSA
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: Sloughfootcreek@aol.com
> To: mkrawlings@yahoogroups.com
> Sent: Tuesday, May 06, 2003 2:42 AM
> Subject: MKR: lotus
> Hamaca Happenings 5/5/03: Lure of the lotus
>        Seeing Moran's wonderful picture of the lotus he took while
> submerged below the magnificent flowers inspired me to tell you about
> experience on Orange Lake.
>        On one occasion before the lake became almost dry from the
> drought, I took my airboat out to find the American lotus (Nelumbo
>        After examining several other flowering aquatic species of this
> water
> wonderland, namely Pickrelweed (Pontederia cordata), Cat-tail (Typha
> Alligator weed (Alternantheria philoxeroides), Swamp lily( Crinum
> americanum),
> Duck potato (Saggitaria lancifolia), Lizard's tail (Saururus), and Cow
> lily/spatterdock (Nuphar), I drifted into a cove where I thought I
> find
> the lotus.
>        I was not to be dissapointed. In the rear of the cove, rising
as if
> on
> magic wands waved from the muddy bowels of the lake, loomed a grove of
> enormous yellow blooms. For anyone who has not witnessed this
> plant
> in its natural state, which must be experienced and not merely seen,
> me
> describe it.
>        The lotus plant is quite large. Stiff stalks stretch six feet
> fibrous roots anchored in sandy mud, to the center of enormous
> like
> leaves. The 12-18 inch-wide leaves do not have a cut, or notch, as do
> those of
> the water lily. The six-inch wide flowers are luminescent yellow, with
> many
> petals and stamens. Like roses, blooms range from just buds to the
> opened stage. After a bloom falls, a green seed-pod containing 8-10
> size
> seeds remains standing above the water. These pods turn black at
> and
> are valued as ornamentals called "chinquapins".
>        Excitedly noting that the water was only waist-deep, I  jumped
> over-board, fully clothed, and waded over to examine a plant in
> The
> roots seemed to be set in soil somewhat more sandy than the normal
> mud
> of the lake's bottom. This probably contributed to the scarcity of
> in
> comparison to other species of aquatic plants (although I have
> huge
> stands of lotus on Paynes Prairie at times).
>        The experience suddenly went from ethereal to ephemeral as my
> began to itch and burn. "Gatorfleas,"  I thought. Surely, I must have
> gotten
> into a nest of the dreaded gatorflea.
>        I ploughed back to the boat as fast as I could and clammered
> aboard.
> Shucking my muddy shirt, I was quickly relieved to see no gatorfleas,
> their sting is brutal. However, my stomach and torso were covered with
> next worst things- leeches.   As I pulled away a dozen of the slimy
> creatures,  my body was left with open bleeding wounds. One gusher was
> coming
> from my navel, and I could not seem to stop the bleeding. But I had
> experienced leeches before, although not as extensively, so knew the
> bleeding
> would soon wane.
>        As I returned back through Cross Creek, I thought of the
> and
> this experience of being "leeched". I wondered if perhaps these foul
> vampire
> eels, these lizards from the River Styx, lured me with their "Loreli
> to
> their feast? Well, the victory was still mine, for experiencing the
> of
> the lotus was worth every bite.
>        Ode to the Lotus Leech
>        Does not the Lotus deserve your care?
>        This lordly tribute to your lair.
>        It's "you" who sends it from the mud,
>        And "they" who spoil it must give their blood!
>        Without your version of the Sirens Rock,
>        Adorned in verdance and a golden frock,
>        Reaching skyward like a shrine surreal,
>        We wouldn't know you, vampire eel!
>        Through the woundings of your teeth,
>        Deep in my navel and just beneath,
>        Inject the poisons from your fetid bile,
>        Mucus and secretions just as vile.
>        I've stolen your treasure and now must pay,
>        With rivulets of scarlet in your evil way.
>        Gloat not, sly slugs of the River Styx,
>        For the Lotus Blossom is my fix!
>                                                              Hamaca
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