Tag Archives: hawk

Don’t fight with a skunk for the garbage rights!~ Or, Perimenopause sounds like a new dance…

work in progess of a cartoon charcter of me.
rodents made this into a condo

The past few days have been just gorgeous. The air is cooler. The sky has been a range of clear blue, to heavy thick grey clouds and rain.  The trees haven’t changed color, even though the past couple of weeks the leaves have started to fall and dried leaves crunch beneath my shoes.

The yellow jackets are cranky with the cooler air, and the over abundance of fermented fruit.  Drunken bees are interesting indeed.

The grass and the wildflowers are now orange, red and browns mixed with dirty yellows.   Even the air smells like fall, dried grass and hay, mud, mold and Halloween.

 I feel a little sad; this summer was so hot, I couldn’t enjoy it. Each day was a steam bath of heat, making it nearly impossible to breathe, and walk at the same time. Even when I made an attempt, the mosquitoes forced me back indoors.

Now, I have to make my fall list of chores, I still haven’t finished my spring’s time list. Summer, forget it. That list was eaten by Uriah and I didn’t even care.

This past Friday the garbage was still sitting out by the curb, not having been collected on Thursday, the normal garbage pick up day; by Friday it was ripped open and spread around the mouth of the driveway by a skunk. I wanted to make sure it didn’t spread out into the road, so I rushed out and picked up the paper towels, and chicken bones scattered along the ground.

 As I shoved the very smelly garbage into a new plastic bag, I wondered, why the skunk hadn’t finished off all the bones. At that exact moment, when that question rattled around in my head, I saw a black nose, with black fur and a white stripe slip out of the drainage tile that stretched under the road  connecting the east side to the west.  

We shared a look and I stood up fast, “Oh no you don’t! I said out loud as I backed carefully away.  “You are not going to spray me!”

I thought I was safe, the skunk was in the drainage ditch and I was near the road. He would have to spray upward to get me.  I decided to ignore it.    I watched out for the cars whizzing by me, mere inches from my head.

Hurrying with the cleanup, I failed to notice one important thing.

 That little skunk had sprayed the other garbage bags.

I tossed the bag I was holding onto the pile, and then decided to straighten them all.

Right now, as I type this, I wonder why I had the compulsion to straighten the garbage bags….

The smell hit me hard, rotten chicken and the odd, burning green smell of skunk!

That skunk didn’t need to spray me, I did it myself. Then with all the brain power I had left, I covered my nose with my sleeve. The sleeve, which had skunk juice on it!

I headed back home, fast!  Uriah happily following behind, his nose pointed up as he kept sniffing the air around me. I gagged and blinked multiple times.  Having to stop when I thought my stomach would end up in the driveway if I moved to fast.

Next week, Michael is checking on the garbage!

****

Sorry, I haven’t been here a lot. I missed reading your Blogs. I will get back in the game. Sitting is a real pain.

Uriah is doing great. New dog food he lost a little weight. He needed to.

The examiner isn’t paying out like I hoped. They made some changes and the numbers aren’t posting correctly. Still I keep trying. I wrote my first article June 27th, I am on number 44 today, and I only made $17.97, that’s with 2,476 hits. Hmmm!?

I am trying my hand at cartooning myself. I jumped around on the internet checkout sites to make your self into a cartoon. Then I pieced together a character, redrew it, and colored it in paint. It is a work in progress. I posted it with this article on the examiner. ( I tried to add a link and wordpress just wouldn’t let me, here is the full link)

http://www.examiner.com/plant-life-in-chicago/searching-for-the-noxious-plant-called-marijuana-hampshire-illinois

 My camera started acting up. 90 % of the pictures came out blurred and the camera started making odd noises. Luckily I had a store warranty I took it back to Best Buy and they gave me a different camera. Maybe I should get an under water camera. It’s a thought.

 **Don’t read this part if your squeamish about women’s issues.* I’ve been doing the doctor run for Michael. Then I had my normal routine -yearly exams.  My doctor thought it would be a great idea to do a biopsy of my uterus. A fast decision he made. He said, instead of me coming back in a few months; let’s do this now…. I was in no position to argue. Michael said, I looked like I saw a ghost when I came out of the doctor’s office. perimenopause is so much fun! Results sometime next week.

I Refuse To Sleep With A Small Furry Rodent!~

One mouse in the house
Two mice in the garage
Three mice in the barn

 

It was two AM on Tuesday. I woke up to the cats boisterously running through the hallway and sliding into the bedroom.  They bumped into the bed, the walls, and the vertical blinds. I rolled over and drifted back to sleep.

Michael sat up and started talking, “I wonder what’s going on?”

Without looking I muttered, “They’re just playing behind the vertical blinds”

Michael crawled out of bed and carefully stepped in front of the bed, searching the shadows.  “No! Something’s up.”

He came around my side of the bed and flipped on the light. “Look at Sano?”

I sat up and Sano was sitting all pretty and proud with a mouse dangling from his mouth.

“It’s fake!” I muttered and tried to lie back down.

“No, that is real” Michael laughed and Sano nodded his head so the mouse, who was being held by his tail, swung upward  then came down and was hit against the rug.

 Sano’s eyes narrowed; when Tomoe walked up to him and sniffed the mouse, which I need to point out was very much alive. Then Sano growled.

Tomoe glared at Sano as if she wanted to smack him. Michael immediately told me to do something about that growl.

Sorry, I have had one too many mice dropped on my chest while I slept. I am not fond of the critters.  To show how much of a chicken I am, I pulled the covers over my head and told Sano to stop growling and take the mouse to his brothers, downstairs.

Instead Sano dropped the mouse. The mouse ran in a circle. Tomoe hates getting bitten so she stood a healthy distance away and just watched.

Sano played with the very fat grey and white mouse like he was playing a pinball game. He wouldn’t allow the mouse to run under the dressers, but he did let him disappear under the bed.  The one I was cowering on.

I jumped out of bed and ran in a circle flapping my arms yelling at Michael, “Get that mouse out of the bedroom!” Then I headed out into the hall and called Kenshin and PJ.  They recognized my frantic, Oh my!  A mouse is in the house!  Hysterical call and ran up the stairs to see what they were missing.

With the two older males now trying to find the mouse, I crawled back under the covers. Tomoe crouched on the edge of the bed, hanging over the side and stared at the floor and at Sano, who was carefully scooting out backwards from under the bed.

Michael muttered something I couldn’t understand. So I peeked out from beneath the blanket.  He held Sano up for me to see. Sano had that mouse clenched in-between his teeth and once more swinging by its tail.  Michael held Sano over the waste basket, and asked Sano to “drop it” -the mouse- into the wastebasket. Michael had to repeat his request three times before Sano opened his jaws and the fat mouse plopped into the plastic bag.

Sano was confused as to where his mouse went to and searched franticly with Kenshin and PJ’s help under and around the bed. Tomoe kept an eye on Michael and followed him out if the bedroom.

At this point, that mouse was out of my sight and I hoped Michael had given him a first class ticket to the moon…

Or, maybe toss him out the door.

The last mouse that was tossed out the door had been caught in a sticky mouse trap.  Michael was afraid the cats would get into the garbage and get stuck in the glue. So he had chucked that sticky mess out the door.  He figured on scraping it off the grass in the morning.  Instead it landed right in the path of a coyote.  Yapping loudly, that coyote raced across the fields with a rectangular piece of plastic and a struggling mouse stuck to his nose…

Picture from word clip art..

Poem…I Was A Perfect Stuffed Monkey~

I was a perfect stuffed monkey

Reddish fur with a beige tummy

face and feet

Until an animal got to me

Now, I lie here without arms, legs or ears

Even my tail was chewed off…

Maybe it was coyote

A raccoon

A fox

or possibly… a skunk  

Could have been that rat

                                    That rat

That steals Uriah’s food and rawhide bones

                                    That rat

that digs the holes around the kennel

under the garden, and

tunnels alongside the horseradish plant

One day the hawk will come by, and sit

Quietly on the railing

waiting for that rat to make a mistake

when he is dancing

on the top of the kennel

Just under the floor boards of the deck

He will scramble up

to look in the kitchen window

at that point, the hawk will strike…

And that rat will be no more

To late for me, I lie here without arms,

or legs, and ears… even my tail is gone

I have all the time in the world

To wonder

Now what..?

Check out everyone at Jingles Thursday poets rally-

http://jingleyanqiu.wordpress.com/2010/03/24/thursday-poets-rally-week-11-march-24-30-2010/

This Bird~Poem For Jingles Thursday Poets’ Rally~

This bird

now featherless

its coat dropped carelessly

in a pile, under a leafless tree

on a patch of washed-out grey leaves

one could hope he forgot where he left them

if not, their velvety softness will be reused in a nest

for warmth, and comfort with instructions on hunting

                                                                                    This bird…

posted for:

http://jingleyanqiu.wordpress.com/2010/03/17/thursday-poets-rally-week-10-march-18-march-24-2010/

Gardening Tips From A Dog~

Why do we think birds have it so good
Because they don’t have credit cards
and electric bills
That they can fly
when and where they want to
without worry..
Maybe they think what we have is great
Living inside structures
that don’t fall down in heavy winds
and we aren’t someone’s food, or play toy…
Seems we have more in common than not
I just wish I had wings…

The rain poured down this morning, an attempt by Mother Nature to clean off the winters sludge from the roads, buildings and ground. Most of the snow surrounding the house melted off this morning. Before this winter will be official over it will take a few heavy rains, then some sunny days to bake everything clean.

I walked over to the Bog Willows and peered inside their tangled branches, I saw where the snow was hiding. Every bit of ground in the shadows was snow covered. White and icy, refusing to let go of winters bite.

Uriah was very disappointed when I refused to walk in the cold water, which covered the low end of the path. He carefully inched along the un-melted ice and drank from the water.

The skies above us were heavy with moisture. The clouds were a deep soft grey, they moved quickly overhead. I looked up at the motionless tree tops. All the wind was high up in the clouds, the winds pushed them into rolling mountains that swiftly changed shape every second.

With our walking path blocked I turned my attention to the vegetable garden. This past October I had covered it with a tarp and wooden fencing, and an occasional pizza box. I had stuffed a large plastic garbage bag full of autumn leaves and set it in the garden. My intention was to dig those leaves into the newly turned soil and pile them around tomato plants. Right now that bag sat, bloated, in the middle of the garden waiting for me, and spring.

 I walked around the covered area. Stopped and called for Uriah.  

Uriah came over and sat next to me and stared at the garbage bag like I had commanded him to, and then looked up at me waiting for a biscuit.

I pointed to one of the tarps. “You think we can uncover one part and set up a cold frame?”

Uriah actually looked as though he were thinking. He stood up and stepped into a section that was not covered and slowly tried to dig in the dirt. Then he looked up at me with mud stuck to his paws.

“Okay! I get it too mushy to play in, maybe next week!”

Uriah looked at me, sighed, then walked over to a hole and stuck his nose in it, and then he stood back and sneezed. 

“Right! That last rat has to go!” I backed away. I am not crazy about rodents!  “You get right on that!” I raised my eyebrows and kept inching backwards.

Uriah isn’t fond of rats! This rat has taken his biscuits, food and chew toys over the past few months. Whenever I mention that fact, I am told rats bite, hard!  Uriah gave me a look and went into the kennel and slipped into his dog igloo and left me standing there, alone.

 I looked up into the sky, I could hear the high pitch scream of the Red Tail Hawk.  

“Hey, Uriah maybe the hawk will get that last rat for us!”

I turned my attention to the birds. I could hear Blue Jays screaming. The Black birds were congregating in the tree tops and a Robin chattered angrily at me from a Mulberry tree.   Cardinals flitted in and out the branches of the leafless Crab Apple trees.  Somewhere on top of the barn, Doves cooed in a rolling Scottish accent:-)

I pulled my camera out, fully intent on capturing a picture of that Robin. I haven’t seen one since December. I started snapping pictures of the clouds and the lack of snow.

Uriah decided he was bored and followed me to find that Robin. Except every time I pointed the camera he decided to bark at the birds. I gave him a biscuit, or three.  He was trying to protect me from the, big mean Robins. How dare they chatter at me…

Beneath the Willow~Poem For Jingles Thursday Poetry

 

Beneath the Willow

I lay inaccessible and supine beneath my Willow

Her naked branches pull me upward

in a flurry of color, waves of light

She drops her clothing to cover her roots

Her muse once led my soul

Now, She whips at my stone

Dancing in the timbre of sunshine

Fire amidst rustling autumn foliage

I drift deep into the cold ground

Shimmering fall leaves bury me

fighting the march of winter

Prelude to the intake of biting air

Willow will sleep quietly

raining bitterness and delight

Blending…

of dried leaves, verdure and decay

Tang of freshly turned mud and dusty soil

She taunts me, coating my name with leaves

Burning embers, flashes of destruction

Move closer, She will burn

Does She Understand this…

Having no choice I am inside the flame of colors

Staring upward spinning blue, against white

She crashes to earth in a storm of orange…

Arcing, vivid orange, photosphere, blindingly

A searing prism

A golden illumination

An autumnal equinox

Her aroma full of passionate ecstasy

Willow, whispers of the changing winds

Listen you will hear her laughter at my entrapment

Roots dig deep, tearing into my sides as She reigns from above

I am… This volatile collision

A menagerie swept together of bitter green and biting hot

All but a memory of light and life

Shifting beneath a path of sweet promise

Willow worries not for me

She will feed off my flesh

Ripping into my marrow

Until I disintegrate into the cold ground, forever supine…

 I posted this for Jingles Thrusday Poetry- I wrote it for the writers site I belong to, it was for their picture contest- October 2008.  I added the picture that was used for that contest.

Imagine All The Pheasants~

The skies are grey and very dreary looking. I stood out in the yard next to the deck.  I really wanted to head back inside and drink my coffee hot today. Uriah ran up to me still holding his milk bone in his mouth, wagging his tail madly and looking towards the back path.

 I could hear him begging, “Come on! Let’s go! Let’s take a walk!” He sat down then stood up and turned in a circle.   

“Ok! Ok!” I grumbled and Uriah  happily turned and trotted away.

 I didn’t have my camera. I looked back at the house. Nope!  I’m not heading back inside. I could hear the Blue Jays screaming ahead of me, and the high pitch screech of a Hawk as he floated somewhere above me. No! That pheasant won’t be showing up today.

I carefully walked over the snow and broken ice, through the path and stopped. Facing the snow filled drainage area in front of me, I turned to the right and stepped over the muskrat holes.

Uriah had disappeared into the trees to the North.  Suddenly, he started barking. I could hear him crashing through the trees and  dry grass.

 Worried, I turned towards the sound. Just in time to watch the Pheasant fly upwards, out of the trees. It flew at least forty feet, complaining loudly and clumsy landed on a branch. From there, it perched unsteady and watched me, standing in the snow covered field.

I turned away and kept walking. Uriah ran past me, his hackles were up, and he looked very proud of himself.

I called after him and grumbled.  “You couldn’t have done that yesterday when I had my camera?”

He gave me a doggy grin and rolled in a patch of frozen snow.

*

Just and FYI- The photo above was taken on the 2nd. The Pheasant landed on one of those heaver branches, today…

Would A Sign Help? ‘Chicken Or Pheasant Crossing, Slow Down’~

 

Early Tuesday, afternoon I headed outside to get the mail. I stopped, about forty feet from the road. When I spotted some large, bird tracks that crossed the driveway, south to north.

I followed the tracks to the south, the way they came into my yard, and looked over the fence into my neighbor’s yard.  I couldn’t see where the tracks started from. But, I could see a large number of bird and small animal prints around the trees. I noticed only the large bird had separated from the rest, and walked a four toed pattern under the wooden fence.

I retraced my steps back to the driveway and hesitated. Should I just collect the mail and head back to the house?  No! This was bugging me, that bird could need help.  I decided to follow the bird’s claw prints across the front yard.

 Uriah came over and sniffed at the snow, then followed me.  

I found a couple of feathers. They were stuck in the snow a few feet north of the driveway.  Reddish mottled brown with a soft gray tuff closer to the tip, about two to three inches long, I slipped them into my coat pocket and kept following the tracks in the snow.  They guided me across the front of yard.   That bird had walked a zigzagging pattern, headed north, and kept to the harder packed snow.

I reached the property line on the north end. Slipped between the evergreens and stood on a sizable chunk of plowed up dirt, and stared across the field. Uriah stood next to me and waited.

 I took off my right glove and readjusted my hat.  The temperature was in the lower 30’s, without a wind. I wiggled toes, to check how frozen my feet were, they weren’t cold. And my fingers were still warm. I wasn’t cold at all!  This gave me a reason enough to move on with my quest.

I was thinking the bird might be a hawk and he was hurt. Why else would a bird take a walk?  He could have a broken wing!  Or he may have been clipped by a car driving by too fast!  I shook my head silently. No! If the bird had been hurt I would have seen a blood trail.

It might be a pheasant!  I usually see a few of them running in the snow, or startling me when Uriah flushes them from the tall grass.  Again, I shook my head; the tracks didn’t have lines formed from the birds trailing tail feathers. And this bird had four toes. I thought a Pheasant’s tracks usually showed only the front three toes.   

 I replaced my glove, and made sure my footing was steady. “Well, Uriah, should we head back to the house?  Or…Should we see what type of bird left those tracks?”

 I left it up to Uriah to decide what we did next.

I use my old ski poles as my walking sticks,  I grabbed them both in a way that said I was finished standing around. Then I looked towards my dog. 

Uriah sniffed the ground, glanced up at me and started to walk on ahead. Now he was following the tracks, and I followed him. 

I carefully stepped out on a wash of tiny black icebergs, small points of back earth, which stood out above the snow.

Tracks of coyotes, a fox, and raccoons crossed my trail heading off to the east and west. Tire treads cut through the snow from an off road vehicle, probably the neighbor who I saw on Sunday.  His tracks headed across the road into the farm field. The animal’s prints looked fresh, possible early this morning.  I thought, maybe they were chasing the bird. But no, the tracks crossed each other. I doubt they actually saw one another.

Curiosity had me moving on.   I was beginning to think I was following a drunken chicken

The bird had walked towards a couple of very old, gnarly Oak trees.  Scratched in the snow then turned towards the road, and walked in the ditch, until he headed out on the road.

I called Uriah back, and made him sit. I waited for two cars and a truck to pass by. Once it was clear, I allowed Uriah up and out of the ditch, so he could stand next to me on the blacktop.  I could see that something had been hit by a car recently. It laid still another twenty feet to the north on the opposite side of the road. The car that hit it, had been heading south.

I made sure there wasn’t any traffic in sight. Then, I told Uriah to sit and wait!   I approached the carcass. It was a rooster, a big roster. With a red Comb, or was it a male ring-necked pheasant? No, it looked like a rooster…

It had the shape of a fat chicken. Well sort of.  It was hit by a car!

I kept checking for cars, and took my eyes off Uriah for a second. In that time frame, he walked up to me and stared at the bird. 

I glanced both ways along the road, and then asked Uriah. “Okay, what do you think it is, chicken or pheasant?”

I rolled my eyes and shook my head at him as I checked the road.  Then I asked. “Okay, Uriah! What do you think it is, chicken or pheasant?”

I don’t think he cared.  But wanting  to get in on the game, he looked at the bird.  Then he looked back at me!  Then back at the bird! I could hear him loud and clear, “Can I take it?  Huh? Come on let me take it!” His eyes sparkled and he started prancing around.  His nails clicked loudly on the frozen blacktop.

I shook my head at him, “No! Let’s get out of the road.”

Uriah followed and only looked back once.

I saw a truck coming at us, really slow.  We had enough time to walk along the road. Then move off the road, in-between the Blue Spruce and the Austrian Pine, at the north end of the front yard.  

The truck turned out to be a farmer and his tractor; he was pulling a couple of swaying grain carts filled with corn. The farmer was very, very slowly making his way down the road. I waved at him. As I check the mail…

Take A Quiet Walk, Just Don’t forget The Bright Orange Jacket~

Uriah’s nighttime walk was uneventful.

Sunday night  the air was still, the sky held onto an eerie, dark grey along the western horizon.   Northeast, the truck stop’s bright lighting reflects off the clouds in a grayish-yellow haze.  While the town, to the south, lights up the sky with a peachy-grey glow. 

I had turned on the outside light, in the driveway. It illuminated and reflected off the snow in clear sparkles, evenly tossed out like bird seed across the yard.  I walked along the edge of light. And outlined the edge of darkness with my footprints.

Uriah kept bumping against my right leg, and then looked up whining. He wanted a biscuit. He would eat all of them if I let him.

Every time I gave him a treat, I took off my right glove then reached in my pocket. He would sit and watch my hands. “Sorry! I only have one more.  I forgot to fill my pockets tonight.”   

When I told him no more, he sneezed out his complaint and started walking towards the barn.

This time of the year is the safest, for walking along side barn at night.  The grass is covered in snow, and I can’t accidentally sneak up on an animal. I set off around the West side of the barn.  Then circled around back towards the north and made a right turn, along the east side, next to the line of trees. 

From the road an occasional car’s motor interrupted the silence.

For the most part, silence followed us around tonight.

Earlier this morning, our quiet morning walk was interrupted.

The sky, instead of grey, held a pastel blue and purple hue, lined with a pastel peach haze along the horizon. The clouds, though thick and heavy didn’t look like a winter sky, they seemed warmer. I wouldn’t have surprised if it rained. It didn’t.

Someone has a fire going. I love the smell.  Bitter sweet burning wood, drifting silently in the morning air.

Uriah stayed close this morning, all the way around the path.  Until we hit the two thirds point along the north side. That’s when I brought to Uriah’s attention some odd foot prints. They resembled a dog’s print, smaller than his paws.

He walked over to where I pointed, and stuck his nose in the footprint and sniffed.  My daughter told me her dog’s paws smell like corn chips. For a second I wondered what Uriah smelled? His stance changed and the hair on his neck rose and he started running following the tracks, round and round, very happy.

He took off into the trees doing his coon hound impression, a deep, drawn out bark.  

“Uriah!  Get back here!” I yelled! He didn’t listen…

 I knew he would come out of the trees, when I walked off the path.

 Before, I had a chance to take a step. I heard the sound of a motor.  A vehicle was moving slowly along the northern tree line, heading west.

I stood still, and waited.

No one could miss me; I wear a bright orange coat when I go for walks.

The off road, four wheel vehicle passed into a section were the trees thinned. It was one of my neighbors. Not the one directly next door. Our property lines don’t touch at all.

His young son was sitting in back of him, and I saw the covered gun behind the boy… 

I started calling for Uriah. Uriah answered me, and he didn’t come out of the trees. The sound he was making, told me he was found something.

The neighbor, slowed down and stopped his vehicle, and watched me. I called for Uriah again.

The guy started to drive away, slowly.

“Uriah! Get over here now!”  I turned and walked back along the path.

Continually calling for Uriah, I was breathing hard, trying to walk over the heavy snow. My foot slipped. I had to stop for a minute. I couldn’t hear the motor any longer, so I don’t know if he stopped, or kept moving towards the road.

“Uriah… Uriah!”

Now, I stood in the dark. The silence was heavy, the air thick and cold.  This night reminded me of the night after my dog; Zeus was hit by a car, a very similar night, just emptier.  

Uriah barked, then whimpered and nudged my leg for a treat. I ruffed up his furry face and gave him his biscuit…

Where Will The Hawks Nest If All The Trees Are Gone?~

Everyone was woken up this morning, at seven o’clock, by Kenshin. He ran across the bed.  He pushed aside the vertical blinds. And he pawed at the closed windows. Then he talked and talked, and talked. Siamese talk a lot. They are very vocal cats…

I crawled out of bed and looked out the bathroom window.

  I saw the dark grey sky. I noticed the reddish color of the decks railings were topped with an icing of snow.   And then, I become aware of a slight movement near the bottom section of the deck. I scanned the lower deck for the rats.  I assumed,  the rats must have gotten Kenshin all worked up.  

But, it wasn’t the rat!  It was a very large hawk perched on the railing, just above the rat’s habitat.  This Buteo was not amused! I disturbed him!  It could have been the Red-tailed Hawk…  But, he looked a lot like the Swainson’s hawk that lives around here.

His breast feathers were puffed up, mottled white and reddish orange, mixed in with brown and black.  His deep rich colors blended in with his beige, downy winter feathers.  

The feathers on his head were slick dark, with browns and blacks. I didn’t notice the color of his tail feathers.  They were hidden by the decks railing. And I couldn’t see the color of his eyes. But I felt his gaze when he turned his head slightly.  He ruffled his feathers, in an irritated matter. His beak was hooked and sharp, thick and dark in color.

His stance was of pride.  A Buteo!  It radiated from him. He was beauty.  Beyond everything that was around him. He lived in this moment.

 I wished that I could be that self-assured, and free… There is irony in that word, “free.”

While he watched me, I saw a flicker of concern flash over his eyes. He stretched out his wings and jumped, and glided effortlessly along the ground.  Then he swooped upward into the trees.

I watched him spin and settle on a thin branch.  I immediately thought of how this hawk lost another nesting tree.

The past few days, the air has held a sweet, woody scent. Yesterday I saw what made that smell.

A few miles from my home, there is a grove of Oak trees.  Their ages ranged from seventy to hundred-fifty years old, craggily towering giants.

 I drove past those old trees yesterday and I saw empty spaces and tree stumps.  The Oaks were being cut down. I saw neatly stacked coffins waiting to be carted away.

Why cut down the trees during an ecological crisis?  Shouldn’t we be conserving nature? 

I find all this all very heartbreaking.  

A few hours later, I stepped  out on my deck. The clouds hung heavy and grey.  

In that muffled, snow covered silence.  I heard the hawk’s high pitch screech…

*

 Today, I reached my 2,000th  hit on my site today..Thank you guys! Comment and ask me to add you to my BlogRoll:-)

You can hear the call of the Swainson’s hawk, and other birds here;

http://identify.whatbird.com/obj/44/_/Swainsons_Hawk.aspx