As much as the current pandemic has gripped the country and a lot of the planet, ongoing tragedies add to the anxiety. Friends and family members whose physical health was already shaky and in an even more perilous state. Oh my God, you’re on the planet, you know all this.
Planet Squirrel has just improved.
My spouse put up a bird feeder. I am grateful. So are squirrels.
It is called a bird feeder and some birds attend. We have sparrows, cardinals, juncos and woodpeckers.
But mostly squirrels.
The reddish fox squirrels are the bosses. If the birds are feeding, the seeds spill down and roll of the fur of the squirrel dining below. They test the pole. My spouse rushes them and they scatter, but not too far. They are well aware of our limitations.
The gray squirrels are more in number, and if they could organize they could secure their place beneath the feeder. The fox squirrel strikes a pose. The grays back off. They keep a distance of 3-4 feet from the squirrel-in-charge.
Drama #1 Hawk
Like an enemy plane, the shadow of a hawk makes in way down the driveway. With a speed he has never demonstrated with us, that fat fox squirrel tears into the brush. The shadow continues past.
Drama #2 It is all Too Much
Grey squirrels whirl round the tree, are they fighting, are they mating, are they celebrating the momentary absence of the red squirrel?
Returning from my walk, I begin my path down the driveway.
The squirrels let go.
They fall 9 feet from the branch flailing and hit the ground with a thud.
They run away.
Squirrels expect hawks from the sky.
I expect squirrels to fall from the sky.
I expect more to happen that I did not expect.
I do not know who to quote here. Mary Oliver provides comfort but I do not feel the same sense of oneness with nature. We live in our house as a protection against the dangers of nature. We separate ourselves from our fellow family members to protect them and ourselves from this naturally developed virus.
I will instead, be grateful. It is beautiful.
Always “beautiful” is the wrong word, the lazy word, but I need to stop critiquing oh my dark self. I was making the move to be grateful. But my beauty response comes from the gut. Exhale.
I will be grateful and cautious.