and cattails you can see the little trail that
leads into the woods that leads to the waterfalls
that leads to the salmon stream that lead to
many, many places with rocks and rushing
glacial melt and a barred owl surveying his
kingdom at dusk if you are lucky enough for him to
let you see where he is perched in the open on
"his branch" hanging over Whatcom Creek where
dipper birds dipped and dove.
The bald eagles nest to the left of the pond.
This is what waking up felt like:
REAL! FRAGRANT! TINGLY: STARVING
WITH CURIOSITY TO GRAB MY BINOCULARS,
UNABLE TO WAIT TO LACE UP MY BOOTS
AND HIT THAT TRAIL SILENTLY WITH REVERENCE, SEEKING BALD EAGLE FEATHERS (YES, A FEDERAL
OFFENSE BUT I DID OFFER THEM TO MY NATIVE AMERICAN ART TEACHER, DOES THAT COUNT?)
DISCOVERING BUFFLEHEADS HAD ARRIVED, FLOWERS
WERE BLOOMING, PICKING RIPE,
WILD BLACKBERRIES, THE WOOD DUCKLINGS WERE ALL HITHER-AND-THITHER!
DISCOVERING MR. BEAVER HIDING STEALTHILY BENEATH LAST YEAR'S FALLEN CATTAILS NEAR SHORE...LONG, LONG BRANCHES IN HIS MOUTH
READY TO REFASHION HIS LODGE WITH AN
EXTREME BEAVER MAKEOVER!
AT DUSK HE WOULD ACTUALLY SIT ON TOP
OF IT AND ALL OF US WOULD WATCH HIM
FROM DECKS IN SHEER AMAZEMENT!
HE WAS A GUY. HE WAS PROUD OF HIS
"DO IT YOURSELF" ATTITUDE.
JUST ANOTHER AMERICAN GUY, YEAH?!
'TWAS A GIFT.