Friday, March 5, 2021


As I approached the old stock pond to take a photo of a gaudy wooden decoy duck surrounded by visiting canvasbacks, mallards, and mudhens, I was startled by a stacatto of splashing—it was too much for the ducks who burst into flight. Was someone skimming handfuls of rocks from the levee? No one there. Ghosts? Then I realized those stepping stones lining the shore were dozens of pond turtles—a bale of pond turtles had launched themselves into the murky depths of the water. Though I was far away, I was a threat. In years past, I might’ve considered myself lucky to see a turtle or two, and here were dozens of turtles sunning themselves along the embankment. I thought of the story of Turtle Island. Were they always there in such great numbers and I didn’t know how to see them? Sometimes the oblique glance from the corner of the eye sees far more than what’s right in front of you. I suddenly felt rich, as if I had found a cache of unexpected change hidden in a hole in my pocket.

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