September .22


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Rugby8
September 22, 2010, 09:22 PM
A beautiful morning, the beginning of a beautiful day. I sit hidden between 2 logs on a small knoll surrounded by White Oak and Pine, an O/U .22/.410 at the ready. The ground is so dry that I cannot move without signaling to all small game that I am here stalking them. Nearby, a large reservoir full of water in a dry land. The sun shows itself like a new light bulb in darkness over the land on the horizon and suddenly a bright, golden light filters laser-like through the trees as the chorus of the night crowd stills and the daytime workers begin singing their happy song. Over there, Jays boast of the bounty of insects they have found. Above, woodpeckers begin their drilling and nearby a Cardinal scolds a group of Finches for singing so happily so early. Close, a Great Blue Herron trumpets in anger as another animal, probably, approached his wading area for a drink. In the distance, a crow signals and then is answered by his crew as acorns begin their heavy journey toward the Earth, as all life must renew.

Where I sit, the Earth is littered with acorns and yet the woods is alive with their crashing, like little meteorites falling from the trees or mortar rounds trying to find targets. Where I sit, it is like being in a virtual chapel with a symphony trying to please their creator with sounds of joy while that great bright light, as it has for centuries, reaches out to all living things. I breathe in the beautiful smell of wood and dirt, of Oak and Pine and old leaves and flowering ones. It is a good time to give thanks for it is squirrel season and I am a hunter.

I look to my watch and notice the date. Another blessing. 29 years ago this morning, I was graduated from Parris Island, a U.S. Marine. "Congratulations, infantry, you made it." Today, I sit on a beautiful landscape where Grant and Lee went at it, while my brothers are returning to sleep after a long night patrol in foreign lands. Semper Fi. I miss being with them.

The squirrel is a cunning animal and I am thankful for having been taught to hunt him, especially in a time of economic trouble for it reminds me of the Americans who learned to delight in squirrel gravy when times were truly tough. I feel like a kid that just awoke, knowing that the entire day was going to be spent at the amusement park with roller coasters and cotton candy; like the high school kid on his way to get suited for football practice, with the chill in the air and the chance that the girlfriend would be proud of him after the game on Friday. Fall is one of the greatest seasons of all. I am thankful to enjoy it.

In my jacket pocket is a small squirrel barker of which I am quite fond. Some grandfathers leave trust funds. I have this barker. Because of whose pocket it resided for years than it has in mine, I would not trade it for a golden calf. It's funny the things you remember when you are at peace, and there is no artificial disturbance and your mind does not have to race with the dozens of artificial tasks that you have let be designed for you and you realize kind of suddenly that you have gained yet again another meditative place to return IF you can keep your head when all about you...

From somewhere, I revisit a scene in a holler where my grandpa and I sat watching squirrels chase each other about in a large hickory tree. I carry this same gun, he carries her sister in double-barreled .410 Then, from his pocket he produces a piece of butterscotch candy for me and this squirrel call for himself. I watched in amazement as he started to make it bark and then there was a frenzy in the tree as the animals took position to see who was calling. We took 6 from that single tree that morning.

Here, the limit is 6 and I am patient and took the same.

I am thankful.

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GNLaFrance
September 22, 2010, 09:29 PM
That, sir, is poetry. Please write some more again soon.

Water-Man
September 23, 2010, 06:35 PM
Well Rugby8, you can add me to the long list of people that agrees with your sentiment.

45Fan
September 23, 2010, 08:13 PM
Rugby8, that is a beautiful picture your words have painted, thank you. As for your anniversary, congratulations, and thank you again, for reminding me that my own is but a few weeks away. Semper Fi, brother

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