Faerie Shelves

Life is everywhere in the woods:  even in winter, even in death.  Three fungus growing on a dead tree stump don snow caps and pose for an artist's rendering of a roadside still life. 

Great Horned Owl Encounter

  Paul spread his arms at shoulder height to demonstrate the wingspan of the large grey owl that he spotted in a section of his woods, a stand of White Pines known as the Cathedral.  The owl sat for several minutes—long enough for Paul to have a good look.  He noticed that the bird had tufts of feathers on its head that looked like ears.  The owl swiveled its head back and forth a few times as owls do while the man stood motionless, frozen in his spot.  Then the bird flew up the mountain leaving the pines behind and lit on another tree.  Paul marveled at how such a large bird could navigate through a dense thicket of   maple saplings with such ease.   Paul’s sighting of the Great Horned Owl—Bubo viginianus—was received with excitement by his neighbors who now have high hopes for encounters of their own.  

Baltimore Oriole

Dec. 23     Today  I saw  a  Baltimore Oriole's  nest near the top of a  big  maple at the edge of the hay  field  next to the old sugarhouse.   I  observed  that most trees do not have nests and  I  wondered what makes a tree special enough to host a  bird  family.


Today's the day to mend that fence across the pasture
As my bull romped through it yesterday.
Along with a wild roll in its eye,
Because a queen bee buzzed him in the thigh.
Damned cow.

Chased 'im wild over the knoll, mid afternoon

before I roped him,
Not a hand held him but my own.
See, I've stood the farm since my twelfth year,
Pa, on his deathbed, says in my ear,
"You keep the farm Stub, ye hear?"
I heard...

Should go chop's more that birch for this sullen

ol' bachelor of a man.
Do it this afternoon know the perfect dead birch,
This afternoon, of course,
After Alice calls.

She rings for me once a day, see,

Jes' to hear how things 'r goin'
Check up on me.
Well jes' two and twenty years ago today
She fixed 'erself up with that trapper, Buster,
good honest man,
Let 'im set places on my back marshes to trap beaver,
See Buster's been helpin' me with the hay...

stanzas from  Stub by Paul Mollomo, II

First Astronomical Day of Winter

Dec. 21     It is  perfect weather for the first astronomical day of winter--the fluffy snow that fell in the night was tossed around  by great gusts of wind early this morning.  Then sleet, rain and more  gusts of wind  arrived .  Many  people are without power and the number is growing.