Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Some colors of Summer

This morning we had a couple of visitors to the back yard. 

whitetail doe in Summer meadow
whitetail doe in Summer meadow
Photo by J. Harrington

still spotted whitetail fawn
still spotted whitetail fawn
Photo by J. Harrington

If you ever need a definition for "scamper," fawns provide it, just as lambs define "gambol" for me. Earlier in the week, the dropped sunflower seeds from our deck feeders brought some other wild visitors right up to the house.

wild turkeys scratching for sunflower seeds dropped from feeders
wild turkeys scratching for sunflower seeds dropped from feeders
Photo by J. Harrington

What continues to remain a surprise is the elusiveness of the local coyotes that can be heard almost every night but are never seen, let alone photographed. Based on what the dogs and I encounter when we go for our afternoon walks these days, the wiley coyotes may be holed up somewhere that the deer flies and mosquitoes can't get at them. They've (insects, not coyotes) been thick enough recently that, while I don't want to wish away the Summer, I am reminded of the delights of October. I've noticed that the black dog, Franco, attracts many more flies than the blond SiSi. I wonder if that has anything to do with why the colors of a deer's coat change from the darker grayish brown of Winter to the reddish brown of Summer. Deer flies are reported to be attracted to darker colors, but, from what I've read, they feed on the blood of mammals, so the dark turkies are probably off the hook.

Fawn

By Mary Barnard 

Out of a high meadow where flowers   
bloom above cloud, come down;
pursue me with reasons for smiling without malice.

Bring mimic pride like that of the seedling fir,   
surprise in the perfect leg-stems
and queries unstirred by recognition or fear   
pooled in the deep eyes.

Come down by regions where rocks   
lift through the hot haze of pain;   
down landscapes darkened, crossed   
by the rift of death-shock; place print   
of a neat hoof on trampled ground   
where not one leaf or root
remains unbitten; but come down   
always, accompany me to the morass   
of the decaying mind. There
we’ll share one rotted stump between us. 


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