Friday, June 18, 2010

Bloom's Begun

The oriental poppies are strutting their stuff throughout the wide curve of my garden.


Sharp rap from the living room window; I rush out of the office and see a woodpecker in what strikes me as its death throes on the grass. Throwing on my plaid jacket and a pair of gardening gloves, I hurry out to get it to safety, though we don’t see the cats around the house often these days and old Casper doesn’t bother it.
But its eye is half closed when I get there, and lifeless. It’s dead.
I cry. I apologize.
I stomp my foot, shake my fist. Fucking windows!

It’s okay (and more normal than not) to feel sorrow and regret at the senseless death of a bird, but I’m a little surprised at the tears.

I don’t know why I’m surprised.


I go out with some dried carnations, looking for a place to put them. There is an earthenware jug hanging on the stump of an oak tree’s branch; I go to stick them in and notice what appear to be leaves inside. Before emptying the jug I peer more closely. Could a small bird have built a nest in there? It’s dark inside the jug; is that a bird’s beak I see? An outline takes shape — it’s a mouse.
I shriek repeatedly and march rapidly away across the lawn, knees high.
Then I laugh at myself.