Title: New Life
Subtext: Rumination on ruination.
Author:
Date: 30 Jul 17 (Sunday in the AM)
Copyright:
Time: 1 minute
Replies: 5
Revisions: 10
Publicity: Superfeed

Spring has arrived. I sit on the back porch with my morning pipe and watch the grass grow a millimeter at a time. I spin up little smoke halos soon to be reunited with their brethren cloud. A woodchuck who lives in my back lot stands guard over his hole, chattering his teeth every so often. Old Rascal here at my feet would a few years ago have harassed the varmint but is now content to lay stretched out on the floorboards.

The withered yellow beech leaves have finally fallen, replaced now with long spear-like buds. Skeletal branches are being filled with whorls of greenery, hiding from view the inner workings of the forest. A box turtle slowly meanders along a cow path before disappearing into the high grass. He’s looking for a place to settle down for the day. I think he’ll find it there in those tufts of soft heather.

In the early morning, before the fog has burned off, I make out the faint outline of four deer, a mother and last year’s three fawns. They’re all grown now and have made it through their first winter. By this time next year, they might be ready to have young of their own. With luck, this year’s acorn crop will be heavy enough for them.

A fox crosses the far end of the field, creeping along the wooded border. He’s perpetually worried about being caught at whatever he’s up to. That worry keeps him alive. No one likes a fox around, but he likes to be around. I don’t mind — as long as he leaves my chickens yonder there be.

Yes, spring certainly has sprung. And it’s been 52 days since Esther left.

Revisions

Bear » Authorship
Elk » 8:23 AM 04 Aug 17
Elk » 10:55 PM 03 Aug 17
Elk » 10:47 PM 03 Aug 17
Elk » 2:14 PM 03 Aug 17
Elk » 2:13 PM 03 Aug 17
Bear » 11:14 AM 30 Jul 17
Bear » 11:11 AM 30 Jul 17
Bear » 10:36 AM 30 Jul 17

The Thread (5)

 Author's voice in grey. 

  1. Heavy sits the concerns of we potential carrion. Animals haven’t a clue.

  2. Made a pretty major cut to this. Probably should just cut the whole shabam.

  3. Magnificent.

    We’re obviously in Aldo’s realm — but your quaintness has his beat. And reference to Esther refocuses us on the man behind the magic in a way that pulls this out of that realm with a cane by the neck. Top quality and a top hat with a rabbit in it.

    I like the deep cut — evidences wisdom, and dare I say, maturity. I’d keep two lines, however: (1) smoke rings touching clouds (sans buzzards); and (2) she made the bed better, so I don’t bother. I leave placement to you, but would suggest the smoke rings go up by the pipe, and the bed goes down by the lady.

  4. Have at it, if you’d like.

    With the cut, the piece is like Aldo (Leopold) meets William Gass. Just a bit on both ends – I can’t touch either for real. I was originally going for the neck hook as mentioned, but wondered if a) the piece could be more serious and b) the stories behind the animals could tell the story of the narrator and his wife. If b), it’d be almost totally inadvertent except for this after-the-fact revising.

    But I thought the fox could be something. The fact that no one “likes him around” seems like a connection.

    Again, have at it any which way, Elk, or anyone else. No attachment at all to this one.

  5. Added the bed and added the clouds; cut the bed and edited the clouds.

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