In the Garden

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An Exacting Price


I started my day with a walk around the woods, after a light dusting of snow; I photographed animal tracks and guessed that we had been visited by deer, squirrels, raccoons, and perhaps a few bunnies, but I am merely guessing.  I stopped at Joan Hayden’s table and benches, and wondered if she ever imagined they would end up in Maine?  Did I? No, I did not.

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I come in, warm up by the fire, and ponder the beauty of a snow covered garden.  The squirrels keep chasing each other through the snow, up and down the trees, and on to the lawn furniture which I did not bring inside; I had plans to give it a coat of paint.

We eat lunch, and I run around the house, trying to close up a package, which I would like to get to the post office, before it gets dark.  On my way home, it is snowing, and the two mile drive takes twenty minutes – there is stop and go traffic in my idyllic New England town, which I think I should photograph.  There is a beauty here, though it demands an exacting price.

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I pull the car into the garage, and chasing the last few minutes of light, I walked around the rear of the house, venture down the embankment, toward the river.  I was drawn to a stand of fir trees, whose branches were laden with snow.  The river lies in a half-frozen state, and the woods are bursting with the noise creatures make when looking for the supper, before settling down for a long winter’s night.

It is cold and gloomy, with grey overcast skies, which turn into the blackest of nights too quickly.  These are the shortest days of the years, with barely nine hours of daylight; for at least another couple of weeks, when the sun will once again demand to shine for a minute or two more each day.  I look forward to the returning sun, and to the dawning of a new year.

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