Nearly Ripe Pomegranates are Sacred Fruit in Jerusalem

Pomegranates photographed by Jeff Zablow at Jerusalem, Israel

We were in Jerusalem. The HolyLand. Everything there was not the same. Everything meant more, touched me, and, you remember how I write that THEY no doubt also stopped to watch those butterflies, the butterflies of Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Caesaria, the Galilee, the Golan and Ein Gedi.

Walking just minutes from the Kotel (the Western Wall) I came upon this Pomegranate tree. The Pomegranates were nearly ripe. Grapes, Pomegranates . . . the sacred fruits of Jerusalem. Pomegranates of Jerusalem, more than enough to take me away from my search for butterflies.

Did I find different species of butterflies nearby, just minutes from the Kotel? I sure did, many more than I had expected to find.


Turkish Meadow Brown Butterfly in the Old City

Turkish meadow brown butterfly photographed by Jeffrey Zablow at Jerusalem, Israel

Which Old City? The Old City, in the most fought over city in the world. What a crazy world we live in, where the  most Holy city, Jerusalem, arouses so much enmity.

Ever since this image was shared on, I have tried to cajole my friends here to travel to the HolyLand, as I have done many times. So many of your are firm believers, so many are devout Christians. I have assured you that Jerusalem and the rest of Israel are safe, secure and will take your breath away. Truth be told, I cannot say that over these last 6 years, my persuasions have brought a single butterfly lover to an international boarding gate.

This is only 1 of 2 Turkish Meadow Brown butterflies that I have ever seen. This was 2009. We stayed some 3 days in an apartment that overlooked the Kotel (the Western Wall itself). You opened your window, there was the Kotel. It took my breath away. Vice President Pence was there just 2 days ago.

I was sure that there must be butterflies thereabouts, and sure enough, see this Brown, on ancient walkway steps, almost shouting distance from the site of the First Temple! I shoot film with a Macro lens. This Turkish Brown butterfly and I played a little game. I approach, it flies, some 15 or so feet away. I approach, and it flies, some 15 or so feet away, and so on.

Shooting butterflies, within earshot of the Kotel. Wow!


Turkish Meadow Brown & The U.N.

Turkish meadow brown butterfly photographed by Jeffrey Zablow at Jerusalem, Israel

Unless I qualify what and where, to you, this image of a Turkish Meadow Brown butterfly, is well, forgettable. Better get straight to it. In 2009, Miriam and I flew to Israel to attend my Rachel’s wedding, Uri her husband to be.

We spent several days in a Fantastic flat, so unbelievable, for when you looked out the living room window, you were . . . looking straight at the Kotel, the Western Wall, remnant of the Second Temple. Head down the front stairs, walk across the walkway, stop and the Security post, descend the stone stairs (all is made of stone), and your are in the enormous courtyard of the Kotel.

Those 4 days kept nagging at me. I had my camera with me, as well as my Fuji Velvia slide film (ASA’s 50 & 100). Were there butterflies in the Old City of Jerusalem? Morning #1 I descended those same stairs, and turned right this time. A very short walk, and there was a small, largely neglected city park. The park had shrubbery, neglected, but some of the shrubbery was in flower. Butterflies! There were lots of tiny blues. As I worked the other corners of the park, I happened on larger butterflies. This Turkish Meadow Brown butterfly repeatedly flew about the stone pavement. Stone slabs that may be 400 or 600 or 900 years old. I persisted, it eluded me, I persisted, and share here the best of them.

Now today, January 3, 2017! we look here and see the absolute mess that is the United Nations. This reprehensible body, has, for its own vile reasons, and led by the United States of America, voted that the home of the Jews for thousands of years, does not belong to the Jews at all. They voted that it belongs to others. They voted that this Turkish Meadow butterfly flies on a fictional land, peopled by folks whose grandparent came there after 1945. The U.N. and the U.S. worked to insure that the Old City of Jerusalem, and its extensively recorded history, actually must be gifted to a new, created people, totally in contradiction to History. Doubt this? Read From Time Immemorial by Joan Peters, before you accept the lies being offered to you.

A casual photo of a Middle Eastern Butterfly, in the middle of Old Jerusalem, a 4-minute walk from Jewish homes, a 8-minute walk from the Kotel, the site of fierce, bloody battles in 1967, and 40 feet from thick stone walls, on the other side of which is Arab Jerusalem.

No explaining all this to this sweet chocolate brown jem of a winged beauty. Its ancestors have flown here for tens of thousands of years??

Yes, I know some may find this post edgy . . . but you know, We have had enough, are sick of being bullied, and enough is enough. I love Turkish Browns, and I love those of you who understand and/or worry for all the peoples trying to live there, in . . .Peace. Will 2017 . . . ?

Jeff…who again went . . . Long

Large Wall Brown (Old City, Jerusalem)

Turkish meadow brown butterfly photographed by Jeffrey Zablow at Jerusalem, Israel

Our accommodations in the Old City of Jerusalem were unbelievable. At our windows you looked across the vast courtyard, and you were looking straight at The Kotel (Western Wall). We were not nearby, within easy walking distance. We were There! This month of December is so connected to the ancient, meaningful city.

I got off to my usual very early start each day. Everyone else was fast asleep. Rachel’s wedding was more than a week off. Had my camera and lenses with me, of course. Had my Canon 100mm 2.8 Macro- lens there too. When I packed, I packed that one too. Maybe our 17-day stay in Israel would find me some time to search for butterflies?

So early those Jerusalem mornings I slipped out silently, and ? Hmm. The Old City of Jerusalem and butterflies. Were there any in this built-to-the-last-centimeter city? I descended several flights of stone stairs near where we slept, and there was a small city park. It looked like it didn’t enjoy much attention. Didn’t the millions who came each year to visit the Old City, Christians, Jews, Muslims- didn’t they come to savor the timeless flavor and spiritual aroma of this theological destination?

This park had some shrubs here and there, some in bloom. Butterflies. There were butterflies there. At first I saw only blues, tiny Common blues. But, I searched and searched. I saw lots of what appeared to be ancient stone. In the Old City the horrific invasions of Greeks and Romans and other armies led to colossal demolition of the stone Temples and structures. There are massive stone about whose original site remains unknown.

Here in this park the butterflies were intolerant of approach. I accepted that images of them had to be at some distance. So here, after many failed attempts, we have Lasiommata maera o. resting on such a hewn stone. He flies in the middle of the city, at this moment in a park that does have some shrubs and does have a number of pomegranate trees. He flies close to the ground, disappears upon approach, then returns 3 or 4 minutes later. What is he waiting for? Does he acknowledge that he is flying amidst ground that the world’s greatest figures have walked?

Large wall brown on hallowed ground. June 26th. Rachel’s wedding was on July 6th. It was beautiful. I cried.