I write my blog posts a day or two ahead, usually trying to get them written and scheduled on Sundays. That way, I can concentrate on pretending to be an author.
It’s a pretense today because I just want to slounge around out on my back porch and enjoy that rarest of winter glories—the sunny day.
Some days are perfect for sitting on the porch and just letting my mind wander and this day is too cold, but I don’t care. I’ve had enough of winter and just want to sit in the sunshine, cold though it may be.
I take my blanket out and uncover a chair. I do check for spiders before I sit—they like the porch as much as I do, sadly. Every sunny morning from here on through September will find me out with a broom, chasing spiders off MY territory. My relocation program is inefficient and by August they will far outnumber me, but I don’t kill them. They have a place in this yard, just not on my porch or in my chair.
Fluffy white clouds drift overhead, hummingbirds dart here and there, my eyes close, and I absorb the sounds of my small town all around me.
The trees and shrubs of this small neighborhood harbor mourning doves and they seem to be speed-dating—eager to get on with nest building and rearing chicks.
The drone of large helicopters flying low over my home as they leave the base nearby shakes the house and rattles the dishes. I don’t like helicopters, and really don’t like them so low over my home, but it’s a disturbance I must put up with, as all who live in my area must do.
They pass over the hills and fade into the distance, diminishing altogether. A passing train resounds from the other end of town, sounding its horn to alert vehicles at the crossings. I like hearing the train in the distance.
But back to the finches, hummingbirds, and mourning doves. They share this neighborhood with chickadees, nuthatches, and brown tree-creepers. Crows and stellar-jays, starlings, and wrens also live here.
I need to just let my mind wander. I have a short story jammed in my head, and it will have to find its own way out. I know from experience that forcing them never works for me. Mind wandering is the only way to pry it loose.
Winter has been a long, drawn-out affair this year. We’ve had snow on and off for weeks, and while the piles of dirty snow in the local parking lots are mostly gone, it’s cold, only a few degrees above freezing. I should pull myself together and go inside. I have an editing job I need to finish, but the sun is shining, and the birds are out, and I’m warm enough under this blanket.
The finches and doves go quiet—a lady jay has landed in my still-barren maple tree. She flies down, picking something from the ground, then flies away.
Soon the sounds of the local mourning doves advertising their availability for mating resume, a gentle background to my thoughts.
Credits and Attributions:
Mourning Dove on Easter Day, by Kazvorpal [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)]
Wikimedia Commons contributors, “File:Mourning Dove on Easter day.jpg,” Wikimedia Commons, the free media repository,