Saturday, February 21, 2009

Seasonal Change

We revolve and spring is out there, somewhere, waiting. Or perhaps it approaches, teasing, like the children's game we used to play--one giant step forward, a little one back. The past two days, it has been warmish in daytime, with a spring freshness in the air, quite cold at night. In Texas we watch the limbs of certain untrickable trees to decide when the last frost is past. Post oaks, on our little acreage. Mesquites in south Texas. The post oaks still look dead, and a light frost nipped Hale's optimistic tomato plants.

Yesterday we found the kind of beetle we call a "June" bug, walking along our kitchen counter. He or she or it looked newly hatched, and none too healthy. We put it out on the porch. In a month or two (I always thought these bugs were wrongly named), there will be hundreds, clamoring for entry.

This morning the bluebird was back, just as commenters to my previous post foretold. He was exploring another box out closer to the big yard gate eighty feet from the porch. We try never to use that gate, in the hopes that the construction damage to the ground around it can repair itself. I was so thrilled that I whispered to Hale to look and something in my voice attracted Bronte, instead. She came bustling up to the screen door, ears forward, and barked. Out of hope, really, that there was something worth barking at. Naturally the bird flew off. And has not returned. I fussed at her, I'm ashamed to say.

To compensate, I hope, I directed her attention to the omnipresent squirrels on the back bird feeder whom she loves to chase. This feeder is a tray that PJ's Richard has constructed and attached to our porch railing. The squirrels, being squirrels, are very cheeky in appropriating the sunflower seed, and they spook the little birds. We know chasing them back to the tree is a losing battle, of course. What is needed is something squirrels love to eat that birds dislike...Personally, I have no idea what that would be.

The native grass across the bare front pasture is renewing itself in a green flush, perceptible now from our porch. This amazes the husband, because there's been so little rain. Apparently hope springs eternal in the veins of vegetation, too, along with a stubborn determination to live.

We all feel hopeful this morning--despite the deplorable news blaring at us from every media venue--and I attribute it to the stirrings of plants and birds, the faintest hint of infant vegetation in the air. Who can think of spring and not feel hope of some kind?


jinksy said...

Spring has arrived in many places at once - it certainly seemed so here today, too!

Sydney said...

I wrote on my Facebook, which I rarely do, that I am taking a break from the media's endless campaign to terrify everyone by blasting the economic news even further out of proportion. If we do take time to look at pansies and the clouds forming and moving in the blue sky, and newly hatched babies -- birds, ducks, squirrels --with their mothers, it can be very calming and grounding. Apparently life IS going on, and blooming all around us.

PJ's talking2.... said...

We had a pregnant squirrel that really liked peaches. She'd have it all over her face. And apple, sometimes. Extra seeds usually do the trick. The bluebirds are nosy. I've had them come to the feeder with the other birds, just to see what's going on. They love a good drink, sometimes a bath. Last year they attacked Shirley, the cat, so I wouldn't worry about Bdog barking. He'll be back. She's just being picky about which house she wants. PJ

Bdogs said...

I love the image of a pregnant squirrel smeared in peach pulp! We'll try all of it--and thanks!

sizzie said...

Your writing made me think of several things just now. Thank you!

We laid grapes, one at a time, strung along the ledge of a privacy fence, and watched a squirrel follow them like bread crumbs. I know birds will eat grapes, but none tried. It kept the squirrel busy for quite a while. It entertained us and the birds ate the birdseed in the feeders.

We, too, have been taking two steps into spring and one back to winter every day or so. Japonica bushes are budding, jonquils are out, there is a little color on the Forsythia. But yesterday was cold and windy. We are further north than you (Arkansas).

Robins nest in our yard all year, though.

I agree with Sydney, I had to turn off the news. That is something that doesn't happen often to me. We subscribe to multiple newspapers and watch several news tv channels. But, enough is enough for a while.

Thanks Bdogs. Beautiful.

Anonymous said...

You're so right...Spring does bring hope! I'm just hopeful Spring will find us this year.