Sometimes They Smile

It was Time for the Woods, I needed a Hike. Not the Best of Days, some may say. Damp and chilly, threatenin’ rain. But still, the wind’s down. I’m goin’. Fleece and a shell make it good.

Down by the Swamps, not where I usually go. Lookin’ for a small Side Trail to try, but there was none. The Water is high now, the ground so flat.

 

I heard the Tap…
Then another…
Tentative, but could it be…
Yes…
There he is…
Right above me…

Pileated Woodpecker. Was just thinkin’ the Other Day, how nice to see one. They’re comfortable, here in the Forest, so many dead trees,  but so shy and wary.
How nice to see one Playin’ Peekaboo from behind the trunk. We stare for a Generous Moment before he starts Dartin’.

Zig here…
Zag there…

I dig out the camera without breakin’ my gaze, finally gettin’ a Souvenir through a safe amount of Brush.
They’re Smilin’ on me Today…
Out of the Swamps, down to another parkin’ area. Up on the Ridge Trail now, Snakin’ along The Ancient Dunes.
The Air is clearer here, even though thick with Mist. The Growth is more sparse. It’s a Tough Life in the sterile Sand. The Trees are much Older Than They Look, and if you can See Them, They’ll Tell you Stories.

Carolina Wren flits through the Brush…

Raccoon tracks in the Mud…

Still lots of Color in the overall drabness, peekin’ out Here and There…

Club Moss…

Strange Behavior for an Oak…

This took a Long Time, longer than you would think the Tree is old…

Beeches, Oaks, Pines Rule the Ridges…

Hidey Holes around the base of anther Deceptively Old Tree…

 

 

“I was Big once, then Lightning took out my side…

After Bugs and Woodpeckers cleaned out the Dead Wood…

The Hurricane came…

It left me Twisted and Broken…

But, thirty years ago, a Bud pushed through…

And a Shoot grew…

And I’m Still Here”

The Tree Whispered on the Breeze…

 

 

The Trail winds up and down…

On the Old Dunes…

Sand and Old Leaves…

Stitched Together…

By Old Tree Roots…

Last Autumn’s Asters…

Leave some thistle…

For the Birds and Mice…

With Enough…

To Seed next year, too…

 

 

“Even though I Fell long ago…

My Presence has Value…

I Nourish Moss and Seedlings…

And Bugs you do not see…

And Leave Art…

For you to pause and Enjoy…

Think of Me Fondly…

And be Kind to My Family and Friends”

Epitaph of a Trailside Corpse…

 

 

 

Lichen, Moss and Partridgeberry…

Still some Partridgeberries around…

Did the Water Table rise and drown some Trees…

Or did they sink in the soft Sand…

Somethin’ to Ponder…

On another Visit…

A Good Day for Reflections…

In the Maritime Forest…

A Pine Root Heals from damage…

 

At first glance…

The winter landscape is drab and bleak…

But, if you Look…

You’ll See some Colorful Beauty starin’ back…

Even from the Fungus…

 

Almost back, the Lake is Still today…

Which is Up, and Which is Down…

No Ducks today…

On a Favorite Perch…

 

Damp and chilly…

But Stimulating…

Another Wonderful Trip to the Maritime Forest…

By Chance, I put a chicken in the Crockpot last night…

To make a Nourishin’ Broth…

It’ll be Ready, when I get Home…

They’re Smilin’ On Me Today…

 

 

©2017, Mike Kling…