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4 Point Deer – Below The Deck “Hi there!” Rocky Raccoon standing at the door “Notchie” notch missing from his left ear – intrepid … Continue reading
Now is the perfect moment
To love all the creatures dear
As we never know how much longer
They will be with us here
All of our animal friends
Give our lives sweet meaning
Whether chasing a ball in the yard
Or their lovely feathers preening
Whether far, far away
In some exotic, distant land
Or right in your back yard
Under your loving hand
I thank you darling Nature
For all the gifts you’ve bestowed
For the stunning array of creatures
From jungle heat to arctic cold
Come into the forest
Take a walk with me
I’d like you to be my guest
At my little House of Tree
You and I will have
The most enchanting time
When you visit my darling home
Made of rock and wood and rhyme
I will serve you my phenomenal
Leaf and magic pie
All ingredients of the forest
From elf-moss earth to fairy sky
I mix it all together
With incantations of peace and love
While the dryads add their healing
From roots below and twigs above
You will never want to leave
My charming House of Tree
You will find it beyond delightful
To enjoy leaf pie and drink moss tea
And I? I will be so happy
If your dreams in my forest come true
Because my fondest wish is always
That LOVE surrounds all you be and do
So, look up into the sky
Wherever you may be
And wish with all your heart
To visit my House of Tree
In a twinkling you’ll be here
Before you can blink your eyes
I’m now gathering the ingredients
For Autumn magic leaf pies.
It’s spring, and this spring there are sooo many rabbits. When they see me on my morning walk, they scurry off into the underbrush of the blackberries, reminding me of the stories of Br’er Rabbit. Well, the reason rabbits live happily in the impenetrable briars of blackberries is that at ground level, at the base of blackberries, there are virtually no thorns.
On this particular morning as I ambled along the bird-song enhanced winding road, I looked up from my reverie and saw a rabbit sitting in the middle of the road. He regarded me as if to say, “Finally you notice me!”
That was unusual enough.
But then the little rabbit – instead of scurrying into the underbrush – hopped ahead of me on the road. He stopped and looked back, then hopped another twenty feet, staying on the road. I continued following, and he continued to hop twenty feet, then look back at me. Was he about to pull out a pocket watch and mutter, “I’m late, I’m late!”? (Perhaps Lewis Carroll experienced this peculiar rabbit behavior to inspire the the beginning of the story he told his niece, Alice.)
The rabbit’s hopping and stopping and looking back at me continued for over a hundred feet. At this point he stopped, looked at me pointedly, and then, now far from blackberries, hopped between a pair of stately fir trees. As I came up to the two trees, I saw a definite path between them that led uphill and into tall grass.
Well, I am sorry to disappoint you, dear reader, by saying I did not follow the rabbit on that little path. I had the entirely pragmatic and human thought that I would be trespassing on a neighbor’s land. But that doesn’t mean I didn’t follow the thought in my mind. As I continued on my walk, I reflected in awe at the behavior of the rabbit. I’ve experienced numerous wonders in nature, and this event has been added to my list of “Small Miracles.”
What came to me in my reflection is this: I have come through the rabbit hole into this life, into this stunning, beautiful, mysterious and spectacular world. Atoms coalesced to fabricate “me,” and I have the pleasure of my five senses. I daily give gratitude for the myriad birdsongs, I revere the majestic fir and magnolia trees, I drink in the green all around so intense it makes the soul sing.
I contemplate the fog rising up from the stream bed at the bottom of the forest. I commune with rabbits, deer, raccoon, opossum and the neighbors’ cats, goats and the lone alpaca. I breath air that is fresh from rain.
But here’s the important factor – I get to know all of that. I have intelligence and emotions that process this sensate data. Gratitude and love well up in me in appreciation of my magnificent world.
May you be attentive to the mystical rabbits that appear in your life – and may you be filled with gratitude and love.
The two little goose heads bobbed up and down in the back window of my car as I drove home. I chuckled as one car and then another came up close behind me, trying to figure out what they were seeing.
It’s not hard to imagine the conversation:
“Look! It looks like goose heads!”
“In the back of the car in front of us.”
“Well… what are they?”
“I say it’s geese.”
“Are they real?”
“I don’t know. They look real.”
Before long, we, the geese and I, were home. I backed up the car to where they would spend the night, making a little stall in the garage and putting down straw, water and cracked corn.
The two little geese talked quietly with me as I sat with them for a while. They settled right in, and soon little Twiddle-dee and Twiddle-di
were sitting side by side, fast asleep.
Some of the snowflakes look very orb-like, don’t they?
As I leaned over, one goose under one arm, reaching out to the other goose, a couple of Asian men came out of the fitness center.
Imagine this picture, if you will. A few days after Christmas, in the full moon light, a woman is standing outside of your fitness center with a goose under her left arm, reaching for another.
The men chuckled, while I, naively, imagined one of them might help me. I said, “These are domestic geese. They cannot fly. They can’t take care of themselves. I’m trying to catch the other one.”
“Are you going to call animal control?” one of them asked.
“Sure,” I said, thinking, no. No, I don’t think so.
I reached out and, bingo! grabbed the neck of the other goose. There I hovered, one goose under arm, the other, neck in hand. The second goose stood patiently, as though this is what he did with strangers every day, while I held his neck.
Right then a young man came out of the fitness center. Taking in the scene, he said, “Are you catching the geese?”
Which made everyone – including me – laugh. Index under: “Making a Statement of the Profoundly and Absurdly Obvious.” I wanted to come up with and even funnier “no, I’m (fill-in-the-blank).” But with a goose under one arm and a neck in the other hand, I simply said, “Could you please help me?”
“Okay,” he came up to me.
“Could you pick up this other goose? Just put you hands around his wings and put him under your arm.”
“Okay,” he said. “I’m not afraid of geese,” he said, not moving.
“Good. There’s nothing to be afraid of. These are very young geese, and they’re clearly confused. I’m guessing they got too big or too noisy for whoever thought it’d be cute to have a pair of geese, and they put them in the pond by the road. The geese came over here where they saw people.”
He finally picked up to goose.
“Which was not very smart,” I continue, “as these are domestic geese. They can’t fly, and you don’t put them in with wild birds.” I had figured this all out as I pursued the geese, and my frustration and annoyance with people who are irresponsible with animals rose.
The Asian men, seeing that the geese were captured and the larger portion of the drama over, wandered off to their cars. I asked the young man to hold onto the goose for a minute while I went inside.
I stepped into the fitness center and – this is the part of the story where you, dear reader, get to play…. A woman steps into a fitness center with a goose under her arm and says…. _______________________________________________________.
Anyway, what I did say to the young man behind the counter was, “There are these two domestic geese in the parking lot. I’m going to take them home with me. If anyone comes in saying they’re missing their geese, you know who I am, let me know.”
He nodded at me, utterly bemused, like, “Where’s the hidden camera?”
I went back outside. The goose-holding young man had attracted a couple of girls, who thought it was too adorable that he was holding the pretty goose, and can we pet him?
I happened to have a couple of big totes in the back of my Subaru station wagon. The geese had a nice little spot to settle in behind them. Otherwise, they would have been flying all over the car. My goose-holding friend put the goose he held in the car, I put the goose I held in the car and he slowly closed down the hatch door as I held onto the geese.
I stood and shook his hand. “You’ve done a good deed tonight. You’ve earned positive karma for helping these poor little geese, who probably would have been run over before long if we hadn’t rescued them.”
He nodded, waved and headed for his car. I – or we, the geese and I – headed for home.
End of Part 2 (Stay tuned for: Rescue Geese – Part 3 – Their New Home)
I have pet geese. You’ll never know how wonderful, smart, funny and companionable a goose can be unless and until you get to know one for yourself. It’s important, for the full appreciation of the story I’m about to tell, to realize two things about domestic geese:
So – on to my story.
One evening, during the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day, I went to my yoga class at my local fitness center. I came out into the night and looked up at a gorgeous full moon in a clear, cold sky. As I started to leave the parking lot, I noticed two birds near the front entrance of the fitness center, standing in the roadway. They were fairly large, and, from the distance, I decided they must be a couple of seagulls, glowing white under the moonlight.
But something about their body language took my attention. Their “shoulders” were sort of slumped, and one thing a sea gull never does is slump his shoulders. If it was just one seagull, I’d think it was not well, but two? No, that’s too strange.
I whipped my car around and drove up to the birds, who stood, forlorn and clearly confused, in the road.
They were a pair of domestic African Grey geese – the very same sort of geese I have! Standing in the parking lot of the fitness center, at the edge of a shopping area, with no reasonable place for them to have come from for miles. I parked my car, got out and walked up to them.
Now, here’s the deal with domestic geese. If you sit quietly, they will come up to you to chat. But if you pursue them, they run. The two geese evaded me, but without conviction. When I stopped and just talked to them, they stopped. By bits and starts, I finally got ahold of one of them. Although she appeared fairly large and was fully fledged, when I picked her up she weighed about half what I expected, and I could tell then that she was quite young – barely a teenager in goose terms.
The challenge now – how to get the other goose with one under my arm?
End of Part One
Stay tuned for more goose adventures.