On the mostly brown and gray palette that is the late February landscape here in southwestern Virginia, I’m beginning to notice startlingly bright splashes of emerald.

There’s something about mosses that makes me want to stop in my tracks, fall to my knees, and get nose-to-sporangium up-close and personal with these tiny plants.

They work so hard to soften the world’s hard edges and fill in neglected gaps… seldom receiving any accolades, or even notice.

Mosses beg to be petted—so soft and furry,  they are the chinchillas of the plant world. Verdant shag carpeting that cushion any footstep and absorb any harsh sound… makes me wonder what the world would be like if it were entirely carpeted in moss.

[Thanks to the following photographers for making their work available through the Creative Commons license: Guido Gloor Modjib; Holly Bourne; AI; BennyThomas Shahan; and Kerry Lannert© 2018 Sidewalk Zendo. Reprints welcomed with written permission from the author.]

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