Love Letters to Nature Collection

Written by Charli Mills

Charli Mills, a born buckaroo, makes literary art accessible at CarrotRanch.com. She writes about the veteran spouse experience and women forgotten to history.

February 15, 2023

Welcome to Carrot Ranch Literary Community where creative writers from around the world and across genres gather to write 99-word stories. A collection of prompted 99-word stories reads like literary anthropology. Diverse perspectives become part of a collaboration.

We welcome encouraging comments. You can follow writers who link their blogs or social media.

Those published at Carrot Ranch are The Congress of Rough Writers.

From 1928-1930s Lectures by Carl Jung

“Whenever we touch nature
(fingers in soil) we get clean.
People who have got dirty
through too much civilization
take a walk in the woods,
or a bath in the Sea (Gichigami).
They shake off the fetters
and allow nature to touch
them (rain on skin).
It can be done within or
without.
Walking in the woods
or lying on the grass,
taking a bath in the sea,
are from the outside;
entering the unconscious,
entering yourself through
dreams is touching nature
from the inside and this is
the same thing,
and things are put right
again (dream medicine).”

NOTE: words in parentheses were added to make Jung’s quote 99 words.

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Stopped by D. Avery

Just an owl, but I stopped, my eye already caught by snow on branches.

I stopped to see this owl see me, watched it watch and listen from this tree.

I too swiveled my head, looked out at the snow crusted field with the owl.

How I wanted to hear what it heard, to see what it saw from that tree.

All I could see was a gray woolen sky, these snow cloaked trees, and this owl.

Darkening gray of this time of day, I’m homeward bound, my work day done.

But I stopped, to see another just begun.

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Letter From Mause by Mause’s Human (Charli Mills)

Dear Nature,

I EAT your leaves! Chomp, chomp, chomp! Fun time is leaf time. You make super crunchy leaves to fly like robins (my humans won’t let me eat robins). Leaves fly gee and leaves fly haw. I zip, I push my paws into the earth and spring like a robin with no wings, I open my maw wide, my tongue flattens, my teeth touch the cold air, I snap! The leaf flutters away. That’s the game. I can spring and snap all day. Nature, you are so cool to make life fun. I EAT your leaves!

Love,

M

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A Letter to Nature by Norah Colvin

Why is the sky blue and the grass green?
Why do bees buzz and dogs bark?
How do birds fly and fish swim?
How does an apple grow?
Where do butterflies sleep?
Why does the earth quake and volcanos spew?
Why do storms rage and rivers flood?
Dad says I ask too many questions. Mum says it’s our nature to explore, discover and create, to solve problems, find new ways of doing things, and heal hurts.
But people also use their imaginations to create even more destructive ways to harm each other. Why? Is your nature our nature too?

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Dear Nat by Bill Engleson

U’re on my mind of late. I wander in the primordial woods, see myself as I once was, arms aflutter, scampering through the glades, slipping, sliding in the wet grass, hanging from limbs.

I see you more clearly than I ever thought I would, Nat. You were there for me, each escape out the back window, away from the screaming, the sorrow.

We talked. I talked. The anguish flew from me and landed in the darkness, the giant Redwoods of you.

You saw me through it, most of it.

Time was my companion, my rescuer.

I’ll always be thankful.

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Love Letter by Ann Edall-Robson

I woke up this morning smiling. You do that to me in so many ways. The memory of your tender touch when the sun strokes my cheek. The lingering kiss on my lips as the wind dances through the leaves. I feel you nearby each time the window is opened, filling me with your scent. You always welcome me with open arms each time we meet. You never disappoint me. You are the gift I cherish each day, thankful you are in my life. You penetrate my soul, you make me whole. Our connection is one people don’t understand.

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If You Could Be Here by Joanne Fisher

it’s always easy to wish
we hadn’t gone separate ways

often I dream you are with me
everyday I write a letter in my head

you would have loved it here:
the perfect stillness in the heat

fields of wheat looking like
a Van Gogh painting

lazily swaying in the breeze
the line of mountains on the

horizon leading to forever,
though sometimes I wish

we had wolves so I could
join them howling in the dark,

my letters to you always
ramble, never reaching an end

as I am always truly dazzled
by the beauty of this world

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The Maple Tree Speaks by Sue Spitulnik

I love you, Mother Nature, for you nurture me. You give me sunshine and enough raindrops so I can thrive. I happily talk to my family via an underground synapses system. My bare branches grow leaves in the spring so birds, bugs, and critters can make homes in me, and I can shade the humans who sit on the ground under me. My life cycle allows my green leaves to turn beautiful colors and float to the ground when the summer air chills. I can even withstand the storms of winter. I wish you could protect me from chainsaws.

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Speak to Us, Threaten by Reena Saxena

I grew up in an era when television screens received inputs from metal antennae planted on terraces. Watching the sun entangled between bars saddened the child in me.

I was taught at home not to catch butterflies and cause them pain, but dissecting a frog in the lab was forgivable.

Dear Nature, your silence has led to ever-widening rifts between ambitious humans and other not-so-vocal parts of the universe. Hiding in forests or expressing rage through uncontrollable fires won’t help.

Speak to us; help us decode your constitution.

Clarify that humans will pay a price for transgression of boundaries.

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From The Ground Up by Geoff Le Pard

Pru Nings, Little Tittweaking’s self-appointed head gardener had a problem. The beds and borders she tended were devoid of nutrients, defeating her attempts to introduce colour to the inherently dull and horribly mistitled village ‘green’. She needed some compost. She’d tried pleading letters to local worthies and love letters to Mother Nature (though Ma Nat’s people fobbed her off that it was her time with the kids). She’d despaired, until meeting Reverend Walter Piece. His churchyard was full so perhaps they might trial terramation*. She agreed and using her unorthodox herbs she soon accumulated a suitable body of evidence.

*terramation, for those unsure is the practice of composting humans

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About Blooming Time by Kerry E.B. Black

She turned the glossy paper pages, eyes dilated with desire, pen at the ready. With artful swishes, she designed – height for drama, longevity of color, spritely little underplantings for surprise, and childhood favorites for whimsy. Beyond the frost-coated glass, snow blanketed the intended ground. Imagination transformed the landscape. She dogeared pages of the plant catalogs, marked items with numbers charted in her design. With wistful sighs, she plotted and planned. Orders placed and delivered, ground tilled and seedlings planted. Sweat watered the soil until her vision came to a glorious symphony of fragrance, her own love letter to nature.

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Garden Devotional by JulesPaige

Large enough for my plot of land. Mine, though nature owns every blade of grass and fallen leaf. Nature gives and takes what is offered by myself and the critters that pass through. The old willow with hollow limbs – home to who knows what, still sways and buds, I planted her. The reed grass has vanished because the cottonwoods gifted by the squirrels took up the sun.

Silver Maples, and various pines are caressed by seasonal winds. Sometimes gently, other times harsher and weighted with heavy snow. This nature inspires as it awes, reminding me that every breath loves.

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Compelling Beauty by Nicole Horlings

I was supposed to go straight home after work since I had a friend coming over for supper. I was already running late since I had stopped by the grocery store to grab a few ingredients.

But when I saw the sunset glinting off of the half frozen water in the creek, alluring beauty that deserved proper appreciation, even though I told myself I had plenty of pictures of that creek from past years, I still pulled over and ran back to snap a few pictures.

My friend laughed and waved as she drove past me to my house.

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Spring Party by Elizabeth

in that one moment
when snow turns into rain
the trees smile
Nature gets ready for the Spring party
flowers, birds songs, lots of sunshine
i feel lightness in the air

after the harsh winter
rain feeds the soil and the roots
Earth fragrance is wonderful
the sun wakes up earlier and goes to sleep later
bicycles and skates are everywhere
garden preparations must start
flowers and vegetable beds

it’s time for renewing
both soul and body
in that one moment
when snow turns into rain
thank you, Nature, for the opportunity
to start over and enjoy your gifts

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Dear Mother by Sadje

Dear Mother Nature,

I know you aren’t happy with your children, yet you’ve never abandoned us. Every year the flowers bloom and the trees wear fresh green foliage. The birds chirp with joy at every new sunrise.

Despite our actions, you keep on providing clean water from the skies in rainfall and your trees filter out the harmful gases to make the air breathable for all 8 billion-plus souls living here.

I know that humans are very selfish and not caring enough, but please bear with us for I’m hopeful that the new generation will make things better, hopefully!????????

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Natural Ways by Hugh W. Roberts

Written in blood, the script of the love letter was unsteady.

Addressed to ‘Nature, my one true love,’ the writer spoke of a deep, abiding affection, a need to be near the earth and its creatures.

As the police read on, chills ran down their spines. The writer spoke of desires to be one with nature, to shed their human skin and live as wild things do. It was clear the author was unstable. The authorities feared the worst.

Searching the woods, they found a campsite, abandoned but for a single, chilling clue: a neatly arranged pile of bones.

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A Resolution by Margaret G. Hanna

I cannot write a love letter to Nature because I have seen Nature
at its best and at its worst,
at its kindest and at its cruelest,
at its most beautiful and at its ugliest.
Romanticize, anthropomorphize, eulogize all you want,
it does not change Nature
for we are nothing to it.
We can only change ourselves.
Our ancestors understood that Nature’s forces were beyond their control.
They lived humbly within it.
Farmers, ranchers, fishermen, all who live on the edge understand this.
They live humbly within it.
I understand this, and so I propose
to live humbly, too.

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Love Letter to Nature by Jenny Logan

It’s late winter soon and signs abound that it’s the beginning of the end.
Snowdrops and daffodils are appearing. Foxes are returning to town and the first kingfisher of the year was sighted just a couple of days ago. I praise God.

His Spirit first, then His Word. It was as He said. He named it, saw it and it was good.
There is always beauty somewhere in everything. Seeing it is a choice. A nuclear power station or a pretty building by the sea that looks like a wedding cake?

Jellyfish freak me out, but I paint them.

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Gretta Has Had Enough by Charli Mills

The wooden chair creaks when Gretta sits. She brushes crumbs off the Formica table and kicks the snow boots off each foot. Her soggy socks feel as limp as her arms. Tomorrow morning she’ll have to duct tape the cracks in her old Sorrels. Tonight, she’ll line-dry her socks. But first – the correspondence. Gretta’s therapist advised her to express her bottled emotions in a letter. Well, she has lots to express, and this son of a horse’s rump is going to get an inkful of her mind.

She begins, Dear Nature, Enough with the godforsaken snowpocalypse you fickle cow-killer!

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Summer Days by Jaye Marie

So long since last you were here.
The memory of warm summer days
grow dim as our patience thins.
brave new shoots compete with bitter frosts.
cruelly bitten for their haste
their dreams are on hold, ours yet to be born.
Mother Nature sleeps on
Her time will come when the warmth.
Of the sun reaches down into the soil
Visions of rainbow hues
Hold back the silver ice.
Its days are numbered.
Packets of seeds promise the moon.
Fingers itch to ready the pots.
And dream of glory’s fragrance
Days of sunshine fill our days.
With sweet expectation…

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My Date with Mr Hare by Anne Goodwin

He couldn’t promise me a day, an hour or even that he did show at all. He wouldn’t commit to candles or fancy tableware. He didn’t go for gourmet food. He was vague about the venue too; I’d have to tramp across the heather, peer across the moorland for a flash of white. I’d take my chance: Valentine’s was the best time to find him, when the air smelt of spring but the calendar said winter and he still wore his snowy furs. But my heart would leap to spot him bounding towards me. Lepus timidus, my mountain hare.

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A 99 Word Poem by sweeterthannothing

The world darkens
a fog rolls in
clouds gather
With a howling wind

.

Rain splatters
Blue lightning strikes
Run for cover
Keep out of sight

.

Selfish humans pout
Sports games cancelled
Plans are ruined
Our prayers unanswered

Dry earth welcomes
Life giving flood
Nature celebrates
Dirt turns to mud

.

Watering holes refilled
Rivers start flowing
Parched animals delight
Lakes expanding

.

Dawn breaks bright
A fresh beginning
Humans reammerge
Birds are singing

.

We need both
Dark and light
Rain and sun
Day and night

.

Thank you nature
Your efforts so valiant
We owe our lives
To keeping this balance

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Thank You, Mother Nature! by Miss Judy

Dear Mother,

Thank you for bringing beautiful warm sunshine today. The splash of rain will nourish the plants and flowers awakening from the frosty days of winter. The blossoms on my Camellia are particularly gorgeous.

The birds are returning to our feeders, and the bird bath has been exceptionally popular with finches and blue birds. Surprisingly no robins or cardinals; it’s too early for tiny hummingbirds, they have so far to travel.

I apologize for my poor stewardship; I am not worthy of your goodness. Please accept my sincerest apologies and promises for the future.

 Yours ever,

Suzy Earthling

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I Sing the Body Submerged by Charli Mills

I sing the body submerged. Of times floating in sun-warmed lakes when mink-like, I’ve slipped my moorings into the depths where gravity cannot touch me. Of times bobbing in beach waves, my knees cradled in sand fragments of mountains so old they never knew the footfalls of hikers. Of times soaking in stinking hot water spewed from geothermal features I don’t understand but my body aches to absorb. Of tea the perfect temperature in a cup that conforms to my hands and each sip becomes a liquefication of my soul. I am water, I am woman, I am whole.

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Natural Empathy by C E Ayr

the day gives up her brightness
the sleepy sun smiles behind the hill
the tree shows off his profile
but the north wind decides to chill

the brisk waves are teased by gull wings
as they dance towards the lazy shore
and pebbles play their music
they rock n roll for evermore

the headland reaches out to restless sea
as though to stretch his muscles
a dry leaf tumbles through a gap
whispers and gently rustles

the rosy dusk now paints the sky
in the colour of my heart
pink and purple turn to black
now forever we’re apart

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How? by D. Avery

“How do I love thee, let me count the ways…”

“Whoa, Kid. Who’s Zee?”

“Not Zee, Pal. Thee. As in thou? Ye olde you?”

“Me?! An who ya callin old?”

“Shush Pal. Ain’t talkin bout ye at all. Tryin ta write a love letter ta nature.”

“Why?”

“Cuz Shorty says ta. It’s the prompt.”

“Yer writin. A letter. Ta Nature. Cuz Shorty says.”

“Natcherlly. But I’m findin this a tough prompt.”

“Natcherlly. Try this:

Dear Nature, I cain’t live without you.”

“That’s good.

Pal? How is it folks kin hurt the ones they love?

Nature, kin ya forgive us?”

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Thank you to all our writers who contributed to this week’s collection!

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11 Comments

  1. Anne Goodwin

    Great eclectic collection.

    • Charli Mills

      A walk in nature and dreams.

  2. D. Avery @shiftnshake

    Charli, this is a fantastic collection you’ve collated here, with some fun surprises. Your insertions made Carl Jung read like poetry. Mause’s voice rings true, loud and clear, and it was great to see her venturing to the page. Greta makes me think you’re writing real ranch yarns again. I am glad in your second piece you didn’t include electricity as that would be a shocking combo with your water ode.
    I’m not lying when I say each of these submissions are standout pieces. And as a whole I am struck by the intimacy and honesty of these letters of love. There are apologies, acknowledgments, and acceptance of our human natures and the many faces of Mother Nature. Overall this anthology is of a nature that inspires and it in turn is inspirational.

    • Charli Mills

      Ha! No toasters or Whitman involved when the borrowed verse calls for water. 😉 Yes, you picked up on the honesty expressed and it is raw lit at its best, D. I’m still looking for the owl.

  3. Aisyah

    Very interesting and fantastic collection. Nature is always one of the most powerful love!

    • Charli Mills

      Thank you for reading! Yes, I would agree.

      • Aisyah

        It’s my pleasure ????

  4. pedometergeek

    Charli,
    I have to get back to the discipline, but have been slacking (in this regard) because of a month-long project. Will check them all out though.
    An FYI for the Word Wranglers: there is a Goodreads.com giveaway for The Firekeeper’s Daughter going on. Since I know that it is part of your curriculum for your students, I thought I would pass the information along. It is such an excellent novel, which rings with truth; I really enjoyed reading it, thanks to you.

    If you wish to delete this comment, do so. I’d understand. ~Nan

    • Charli Mills

      Nan, you will fill the tug when the time is right for you. A writer’s mind and heart are always working in the realm of story and symbols. Oh!!! Thanks for the tip on the discounted price for Firekeeper’s Daughter. I realized that Angeline Boulley is coming out with her second novel — it’s about one of the twins and continues the theme of exploring missing indigenous women. I’m so excited about the release in May!

      • pedometergeek

        Oh, I can’t wait. I’ll be looking forward to its release (Warrior Girl Unearthed is the name of the new one). The giveaway is for ten print copies of the novel. No cost to the winners of it, but it depends on how many people sign up for the giveaway, for what it is worth.

        It looks like I have to start thinking about painting a canvas of literary things, or maybe a putting together a collage. Thanks for your weekly inspiration, Charli.

  5. Norah

    What a beautiful collection in appreciation of nature in so many ways. This prompt was obviously inspired, Charli, as it inspired so many beautiful stories and reflections and, I think, more poetry than usual. And more stories from you, if I’m not wrong. I enjoyed every one. Brilliant. I think the collection would make a wonderful anthology.

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