Sometimes, it’s just better to watch

Feb. 11, 2013 @ 06:07 PM

Sometimes you watch. It is late in the day and the moon is early, curtseying in the sky.
She is bashful, yet she shines. The moon is a magnet, sliding up along the cold winter sky.
One wonders of the presence of the moon on a cold afternoon, or of the fish and how they rise to feed or sink to hide, and of the birds in the sky — do they fly by the moon?
Might the small game scurry to stay warm? Do the deer browse? Are raccoons early upon this stage?
There is presence here. There is a moon in the sky, which is growing cold and dark.
Sometimes, you watch. It chose the limb near the top, not necessarily the limb at the top. The limb is strong enough and familiar for the hawk.
This walnut tree could be an oak or a gum, hickory, pine, cedar, poplar or maple. It is here on this limb, from a distance far away, that this hawk hunts.
The hawk doesn’t use sound or a sense that we humans have yet to define, nor does it guess or gamble. The hawks uses its vision as it searches and waits for a flicker or evidence that prey is nearby.
Sometimes you watch as the hawk waits on this limb.
It is the color of the new day. There are no rules upon this slate of pale white and nearly blue. From this frozen, dormant ground, the emptiness of a tree frames the temperamental nature of an inspired sun.
The limbs frame this setting, and the sun spills its bold colors as they run carelessly yet passionately across this sky. One imagines a thaw is soon to be felt. Like plumes of life and crescendos of color that melt and bend, there is pause to see these colors.
One gestures but not to point out. Instead, gesturing is an acknowledgment that there are lines we color within and there are lines created by the trees that are meant to be colored beyond.
Sometimes you watch. It is the unnatural intrusion that this light casts, and the fox prowls as a fox might when it is late in the night. There was a rabbit here just yesterday. This rabbit feeds upon the winter foliage, and it knows of the fox, too.
The fox is not red or menacing. Instead, it is grey and brown and perhaps the shoulders are colored with an immature and suspicious red. Certainly, the nose is black and is alert to the ground in search. For a moment, the fox scours the rotting leaves beneath the pecan tree.
It is quick and slow. It is low to the ground, its ears alert and tail crooked to the side. The cold and need for warmth inspire it to eat. The fox is tracing and guessing and finding clues while leaving none behind. During this moment, the fox’s eyes reflect the beam of light cast.
Will the rabbit escape? Will the fox hunt through this night? Sometimes you wonder. Sometimes you watch.
The creek is swollen, and the water flows clean and the stones create an ambience. Even though you hear, sometimes you watch.
The thin, fragile heron is low in the sky, and when this bird hunts, sometimes you watch.
The frost is thin, the sun is slow and late, but the melt begins and you watch.
It is the moon. It is the hawk. It is the colors outside the lines. It is the fox. It is the things felt, heard, observed, noticed, sensed and it is the things we sometimes watch.
Enjoy your time outdoors.

You may contact Jason Hawkins at hawkinsoutdoors@msn.com.