Quick Work


   Snow dunes line the parking lot. Several women and their cars are here. They are dressed to jog. “Where do they think they’re going to go?” I wonder. The only trail is the road. One of the park crew’s personal vehicles is here also, unusual for a Saturday morning.  One of the women gives some kind of instructions: Protein, protein, PROTEIN!

   The driver of a county park truck with yellow snowplow on the front stops alongside me. It is Butch. He tells me he’s going down to “See if I can open up Red Bridge.” 

   I pass the weathered red barn with trims in faded blue and green and small nails from which rust has seeped and stained in a row. Half a dozen homes cluster in an unnamed corner settlement. In front of one home, a sign-post shows the street number. A tin heart, punched around the hem, and with the name Hertzog painted on it in white, hangs from a bar. In front of these I see the crushed and crystal-ridden body of a sparrow, poor sparrow! which makes me think about God. I have to shake off the image.

   By the time I walk past, and return, the other parking area is nearly snow free and clear. I shake my head.

   Two cardinals, four waterfowl and one heron plus a couple of bluebirds and maybe jay add local color to the fields and stream. The heron is perfect and I wish I had a camera and I don’t wish I had the camera. Sometimes it disturbs them and that is the last thing I want to do.

   Butch’s truck bears this note: “How did you make such quick work of that?”

   Then I come home and make six quick copies of a poem to share with Writer’s Group and my list of things to do:

  • get my mom’s Valentine’s Day flowers
  •  hit the Y
  •  visit Goggleworks.
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