Above the splatter of the
fountain, a continual ‘soosh’ of wind is moving the leaves. I wonder, is there any wind song if there are
no leaves to dance?
Restless, restless, the oak
branches, the pine across the way – at times the wind sound crescendos and as
quickly softens to a whisper. Low
pillows of gray white clouds pass by steadily, ships at sky-sea.
A squirrel hops up to a
comfortable perch on a fence post – the last post before the space where fence
section was removed this winter. Munching
on his dinner, he shows no alarm. How
can he know, as I do, that the hawks are back and will soon be feeding their
young with tasty squirrel meat?
A furry finial, he waits
motionless now. Does he wonder why the
gap in the fence? Why his “highway” has
an eighteen foot interruption?
It had to be removed, you
see, for the machinery, tree removal machinery, to have access to the yard next
door. Men came and hammered down the
fence. Men with ropes and tackle and
chain saws. It is their business, taking
down fences in order to take down trees.
The largest oak of all is
gone now. Home to squirrel and communion
of birds, it is gone. The four foot wide
stump which remains would be a far wider place to eat his dinner, wide enough
to sprawl in comfort. But he never goes
there. It is the fence post he prefers.
Did he cry as I did when his
home came down?
Men with saws, hawks with
claws, they all are part of squirrel’s life.
Hazards are everywhere. So he
eats, and rests, and listens to the leaves dancing with the wind.
I wrote this last June while still in mourning over the deliberate removal of a large oak tree in what had been my back yard before I built my new home next door.