My mother always claimed I had a grasshopper mind. I’d be on to one thing and then the next without a second’s pause. Perhaps I had undiagnosed ADHD, who knows. In any case today I was simply looking out the back window of the house, watching a flock of crows wheeling above the pines when my mind went roving over territory not visited in a while, and yet relatively new.

Leap one -- Garage sales we used to hold at my late uncle Rupert’s house popped into my head. My friend Sue and I were the sellers when we were young moms, later it was my daughter and I who laid out the odds and ends of life, and later still it was just me. We would haul all our stuff to his place because, for one he lacked a driver’s license, and for two, he had large items to sell that would have been difficult to haul anywhere else. Uncle Rupey always purchased chicken for our lunch, from KFC when it was in business in Park Falls and then from the local deli. We didn’t make a fortune off sales of course, but I recall those days with fondness. I miss him.

Leap two -- There is a partially albino crow hanging around our area. Its head is black, but its body is white. An interesting mix among its all black companions. Crows have been ever- present since we purchased this property -- many years ago now. It’s good to have a constant, isn’t it? I’ve read some info about crows. They are one of the most intelligent of birds with their own language and rituals. Imagine that, they seem so common… Some folks consider them portents of an ominous event on the horizon. I hold no such feelings toward them. They’re just birds, wondrous birds.

Leap three -- The trees are lovely aren’t they, as they have been for many days of late. The rain/snow mix of the week past has left everything outdoors with a white frosting glaze. Even the cattails along the roadsides have a marshmallow top. I often wonder how it would be to live in a place without a change of seasons. I don’t think I’d like it much.

“Awakened to a white-frosted world.

Not a tree, not a bush, not an evergreen bough

Had escaped the Master’s paintbrush. And so for now

The landscape is picture-perfect, pure white and calm serene,

With only light and shadow, and not a hint of green.”

Leap four -- Yes, when cleaning out a drawer I came upon some of my vintage poetry. Some of it is okay, some of it is terribly bad. It’s a walk down Memory Lane reading those poems, they fully reflect what was going on in my life at the time each was written. The above is from years ago, but fits once more. Pacer, our golden lab, figures heavily in many of the verses. No wonder, as he was my boon companion back in the day. Big old baby that he was, he was a fine one to have around. I even wrote a poem dedicated to him, including his love of dragging sticks, large and small, around the yard. Miss that pooch, and cherish him I did. And still cherish his memory. If there’s a doggie Heaven, here ya go boy:

“The white dog romps, a stick-toy in his jaws,

Robin’s egg blue sky o’er his head, greening grass beneath his paws.

He cares not where we go, he cares not what we see,

His only wish and hope in life is to be ever close to me.

He watches over me in sickness; enjoys our silly play,

And I cherish him, yes cherish him, each and every day.”

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