Wednesday, October 1, 2014


It was about sixty-three degrees this morning at five a.m. Stepping through the front door I swept the yards toward the west and south with a flashlight. Its beam flooded over a doe and its young fawn bedded down under the oak trees about twenty yards from the apple-scented corn I have been spreading out for them. From where I stood they were about the same distance away. Two sets of eyes glowed and two sets of ears twitched. Mother and child seemed oblivious to my presence and the wash of white light that featured them. After a few minutes they stood up and meandered off into the darkness. Momma was limping, probably hit by an automobile.

This afternoon, the mercury red-lined at eighty-three degrees, so with a pistol strapped to my hip I cruised The Shire giving particular attention to the patches of sunshine around the pond. Snakes love to curl up and incubate in such places. Mornings are becoming cooler, and free heat is getting in shorter supply for cold blooded creatures. No sign of them. Turtles, about the size of a Frisbee, were suspended on the surface of the small lake exposing as much of their armored home as possible. They, too, were soaking up the late afternoon sun; head and neck protruded above the waterline like a periscope.

Toward the west, scattered cloud-cover might provide the palette for a beautiful sunset. Believe me, very often the sinking sun makes an epic statement to the glory of its Creator. If so, I will grab my camera, get on the four wheeler, thread through the shadowed and winding and canopied woods trail that opens to hundreds of acres of pastureland, to see if I can capture some of the magnificence of this fading day framed in my viewfinder.

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