A quiet path strewn with petals makes one cautious and aware that around the bend something small and fragile could be startled. Gold finches, mourning doves, Carolina wrens, and Baltimore orioles, are a few of the backyards visitors. A bumper crop of chipmunks scurries out of every nook and garden cranny.
This day was indeed fruitful for Mr. C., tending to his garden, pruning and weeding, and enjoying a surreptitious cigar. He was the first to find the large, dark turtle by my sister's gate. My sister said, "He's friendly; he doesn't even stick his head in his shell." Then, I rushed off to the internet, my researcher hormones on high alert. I found that snapping turtles cannot stick their heads in their shells and they are the only turtles without this ability. By the time I returned with my other camera, he had slipped away and the people who'd been watching him had kindly given him his opportunity.
This gap, from last year, 2010, to now, has been a time of dreaming and waking and not knowing which was which. But today it is raining on the rhododendrons and mountain laurel. The sound of the rain on the leaves is different from the sound of the rain through the bare trees. There is a bullfrog that croaks on occasion by the kidney shaped pool that's gone green and pond-like. The abandoned house below is sinking in the vines and trees around it.
We have a dog again. A slightly old new dog. He will appear often in the Tiny Urban Forest. I hope for many years.