Around my pond we not only have old and new willows, but also a vigorous community of frogs. They include American Bullfrogs, Northern Green Frogs, Western Chorus Frogs, Northern Leopard Frogs, Northern Spring Peepers, and Gray Treefrogs. Throughout the spring and summer the music changes.  The first sounds are the Peepers that start singing in early spring, as soon as we hit a certain temperature.  That can even happen in the winter if we get a warm spell.  They begin at dusk and keep it up throughout the night. They are a wonderful reminder that life keeps cycling and Mother Nature is in charge.

I have a lovely little book of poems titled all the small poems by Valerie Worth.  I use it often when I give an Art and Poetry tour to children at the Columbus Museum of Art.  Although it is a children’s book, it has a honed simplicity and imagery that adults can appreciate, too.  This is her poem called frog:

The spotted frog                                                                                                                                                                                                       Sits quite still                                                                                                                                                                                                             On a wet stone;

He is green                                                                                                                                                                                                               With a luster                                                                                                                                                                                                             Of water on his skin;

His back is mossy                                                                                                                                                                                                   With spots, and green                                                                                                                                                                                           Like moss on a stone;

His gold-circled eyes                                                                                                                                                                                             Stare hard                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Like bright metal rings;

When he leaps                                                                                                                                                                                                         He is like a stone                                                                                                                                                                                                   Thrown into the pond;

Water rings spread                                                                                                                                                                                                 After him, bright circles                                                                                                                                                                                         Of green, circles of gold.


My daughter just saw the new Natalie Portman movie Black Swan and issued a warning to me that I might not want to see it. I knew it was a very dark, complex film.  I had read that in reviews, as well as that the preparation required a year of ballet training.  But I was not aware that Portman had lost 20 lbs. for the role or that the character is bulimic in it.  It is no surprise to those of us in the “friends and family of people with eating disorders” community that ballet dancers are among the most noted with the illness. In my work, I hear many tales of dancers, gymnasts, runners and other young athletes –especially ones who have suffered an injury and have to stop exercising –who develop a love affair with ED or his female counterpart.

I would love to hear from you if you have seen Black Swan and what your reaction was.  Also, do you think it would be triggering to a person with ED or have some different effect?  What is the best way to discuss it?  Since it has been nominated for Golden Globe awards and probably will also be for Academy Awards, what is the best way to handle it’s presence in our social consciousness?

Here are some of our frogs: