Archive | 11:40 AM

Late Summer Sounds

27 Aug

It is never quiet this time of year.  The insects have only a few weeks to live a whole lifetime and they are using it to the fullest.  Crickets sing non-stop.  Driving down the road you can hear different populations of insects: katydid town, tree frog alley, other high singing, whining, buzzing, noisome unknowns.

There are fewer birds singing–no dawn choruses anymore.  Now there are scolding parent birds: the robins, the house wren, the red-tail hawk.  The crows still harass the owls occasionally in the mornings.  The sapsucker occasionally flits across singing about the sap in the mountain ash.

We wake up and go to sleep and live the days to the short-lived strong-voiced chorus of insects.  An occasional coyote song.  And at night the comforting high, thin song of my blood accompanied by the deep pulse of my heart joins the insects singing in my ears as I fall asleep.


27 Aug

A couple early mornings have been still, hot, and humid.  On those mornings one can smell scents usually not available to the human nose.  Or at least my human nose.

On the house end of the hedge row there was the sharp acrid stink of a skunk.  Hmm.  This animal was scented down near the house a few nights, too.

The rank smell of some canine; fox? coyote? was up on the far end of the lane way, where piles of poop are occasionally left.

While walking two rows in on the north long edge of the corn field, holding up an arm to shield my face from  two corn leaf layers that are just at neck and head height, admiring the cathedral-like aspect and contemplating that at Hawthorne’s height it would be even more cathedral-like since the arches would not smack one in the face, I walked into a pool-like scent arena filled with the dusky smell of buck deer.  Had one or more been sleeping in the corn?  Or eating?  Or hiding?

Wednesday night was warm and still and clear when we arrived home from a meeting.  The stars in their myriads were bright in the blue-black sky.  The milky way, that highway of stars, was stretched in a curve across the vault of the sky.  Depths upon depths of stars were visible.

Later on, about 3.15AM, we were woken by a tremendous tearing explosion of thunder.  Outside it was still, not the faintest breeze stirred.  And warm.  But high above our earthly layer a big storm moved by fast, shattering the peace of the night, eventually dropping a quarter inch of rain.  The thunder and lightening went on for a good 45 minutes.  A slight breeze came up towards the end but by morning all was calm and warm and wet once again.

During that storm, Hawthorne needed attention.  Not only did the thunder upset him, he was vomiting.  Grass eating and vomiting continued until late Thursday.  He just will not stay away from the fallen corn the deer are pulling off.  Corn cob chunks can cause nasty obstructions in the intestinal tracts of dogs.  This afternoon he continues to lie down and sigh.  No food.  No water.  We have prayed for him.

Pounce slunk (is that the past participle of ‘to slink’?) upstairs and hid under our bed.

Now it is Saturday:  Thursday evening I started scoping out veterinarians who still do exploratory surgery on domestic pets without the extras many vets now think are warranted and which essentially treat the animal on the level of a human.  We do not fell at peace having a complete blood work-up, scans, and x-rays and, and, and…  Kept praying, asking for God’s mercy.

Friday morning Hawthorne was weak but went outside with me.  His urine was the color of dark buckwheat honey; scary, but there was no blood in it.  And then he slowly walked up into the field; the leading edge of his poop: a hunk of corncob with corn still attached.  He was lighter on his feet after that but after a walk and eating slept most of the day.  Thanks be to God!

Today he is himself.  We walk together now, with him on a leash until I can either buy or make a muzzle that will keep him and his beloved corn cobs apart.

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