Photographer's Note

In this scene is a reflection of a willow tree on the right, and floating leaves on the left at Albuquerque Bio Park's Dragonfly Pond Garden.

In most cultures dragonflies have varying meanings, but often symbolize growing, changing and a sense of self. Old English folklore tale: if a dragonfly lands on you it is a sign you will hear good news from someone dear, and conversely if you see a dead dragonfly, it symbolizes sad news. In Japanese paintings they are the symbol for new light and joy, happiness, courage and strength. In European culture the dragonfly was given the name of "Devil's Darning Needle", a superstition that it would sew shut the mouths of children while they slept. The Swedish name for dragonfly is trollslanda, which means "hobgoblin fly" in English. Swedish fantasy believed that hobgoblins, elves and brownies would live hidden in woods and dragonflies were considered to be their twisting tools. To the Chinese they are a symbol of summer, but also a symbol of instability and feebleness.
Some cultures call the dragonfly the witches' or devils' animals, while in others they are honored.
Some people believe the dragonfly symbolizes emotional and passionate early years of life, and balance and clarity with age. It represents a sense of self that comes with age, maturity, and clarity of the deeper meanings of life.
There are numerous dragonfly superstitions, myths and beliefs. Next time you encounter one in the garden, think not only of its natural benefits, but its mystical and magical meanings and fly into a world of imagination.

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Additional Photos by Ray Anderson (photoray) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1203 W: 1 N: 3169] (13981)
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