It's hot. The chickens are going around with their mouths open. This is when we need to be sure that there is plenty of water for them. The wild birds are sharing the birdbath and find shade during the hottest parts of the day in the trees and bushes nearby.
Carl caught a sparrow the other day.It was near the fence under some bushes. I think Carl was surprised to find that he had actually caught it. By the time I pried it from his mouth, it was dead. He was going to eat it. He was very unset that I took it away from him.
I had been trying to get some shots of our newest members of the community. We have a mother deer that comes to the watering container every evening. she has two babies that she is very protective of.
Usually, she comes down by herself and drinks... then at some point she lets the babies come down too.
But, the minute she sees me, as if they have some sort of pre-arranged warning worked out between them, they disappear into the trees.
Mom always stands her ground and likes to give me "the look"...
And then she slowly leaves too...
Well, a few days ago.... I went out to feed the chickens and close them up for the night. I looked down toward the driveway and there were the deer... all looking at me.
I returned to the house for my camera and when I came back outside, they were still there.
Miracle of miracles.
I finally got these photos of our cute, little spotted visitors.
One of them looked up the hill. The other kept staring at me.
But, I now have some images that I'm happy with.
They come back every evening to lean through fences and reach into my garden. The pile of garden clippings has been rifled through by morning and the deer scat abounds.
Such beautiful creatures. I wish I could touch them. Walk up to them and look into their eyes... to let them know that I'm OK, that they don't have to fear me.
But, it's a good thing that they are fearful. Death is always close. I hear it at night... when the coyotes kill something and howl their victories on some distant hill... and... there are all the other predators that own the hills from here to the river. I fear for these lovely creatures, especially at night. I'm reminded of a favorite Mary Oliver poem called
This morning I watched the deer
with beautiful lips touching the tips
of the cranberries, setting their hooves down
in the dampness carelessly, isn’t it after all
the carpet of their house, their home, whose roof
is the sky?
Why, then, was I suddenly miserable?
Well, then, this is nothing much.
This is just the heaviness of the body watching the swallows
gliding just under that roof.
This is the wish that the deer would not lift their heads
and leap away, leaving me there alone.
This is to wish to touch their faces, their brown wrists-
to sing some sparkling poem into
the folds of their ears,
then walk with them,
over the hills
and over the hills
and into the impossible trees.
( From Mary Oliver's book, Why I Wake Early.)