Last night we fell back in time. Somehow it feels connected to the oaks and their heavy plum and rust colored leaves, their obstinence in holding on, or holding back. Last year it was a disaster, the early blizzard fell on trees and the weight made them crack and groan. The pain of the forest was audible, trees crashed to the ground, limbs were torn, and homes of several animals were demolished. This transition from fall to winter is gentler this year, in fact, some of summer still lingers in the crickets and a few cicadas that insist on clinging to the bark and sounding off like broken car starters. The robins still circle around the yard -- I have so many earth worms! Raking leaves, I can scoop up fist fulls. If only I ate worms!
This year, I won't rake back near the woods. But most of what's around the yard I'll take up. There must be a lot of tiger moths about -- I've seen so many wooly bears this year -- found some small ones dead in the road not too far from here as I walked Morris. Perhaps pesticide killed them. This is still a neighborhood that values a big green lawn.
Last year, next door to me, a 1920s, kidney- shaped pool, full of bleach and shock was emptied into the forest. Then it was filled in with soil from the garden so that the garden is now a sunken garden inviting flooding and soil erosion. And just as sudden, the forest grew quieter. The frogs -- and there must of been a good-sized bull frog and lots of smaller ones -- were silent. Such disregard for animals makes my heart break.
Last year I didn't hear the peepers.
The squirrels are out digging like mad, small groups of gray squirrels with black squirrels are on the lawns. I worry about those chemicals in the grass and what that will mean for squirrel reproduction. My grass is chemical free (hopefully). I am sure there are chemicals from the rain and run off from neighbors.
Morris finds a few squirrels that have darted out before the cars. He always looks for them as we circle around. His nose needs to find them every time, they're in the leaves on the side, no one has buried them.
I read a story once about a person who felt compelled to bury all road kill in ceremony. Sometimes I feel like that.