Friday, April 8, 2011

Mysterious End of Winter

This was the scene on the last blizzard of winter. There was fog ribboning through the valley

There were times when all was white because of the airborne frost and blowing snow

The roads became invisible

By mid afternoon it began to clear a little

I saw a shape in the trees

It was the watchman of a covey of wild turkeys

He was watching for marauding coyotes who had taken two of his flock

There were five of them left, high up in the trees

I hope they made it home safely. I had to leave them and make my way home through almost a foot of snow on the roads.

I had met the turkeys on the road a few weeks back, being herded home by their caretaker. She told me they were wild, and had been hanging around her yard all winter because she threw feed out for her peacocks, and so she had adopted them too. But she and her husband had recently acquired a beautiful retriever puppy who had disturbed the turkeys' privacy, so they had taken off down the road (they walk most of the time) to find a puppy-free place to live. They were probably unaware that they would not find free poultry seed everywhere. They had evaded coyotes up until now by roosting high up in trees, and they were safe in their former home because the dogs ran the coyotes off. Unfortunately they did not have the patience to see the puppy outgrow its poultry chasing phase, and so headed into the dangerous unknown. I haven't seen them since, though I've seen tire tracks in the adjoining fields as if someone has been out looking for them.