Thursday, October 29, 2009

Coyote Chorus

I love to lie back and close my eyes
when listening to beautiful music.
The subtle harmonies and
running lines intertwined,
soothe my mind and transport me
with each wafted note.

The sounds of nature feel, smell, and taste
like a distant symphony-
the reeling song of coyotes
circling around some unseen campfire,
joined in tribal pow wow.
Quiet at first, a woman’s throaty cry
rises in joyful expression
followed by men and children
not to be outdone.

One, then another voice adds
counterpoint, harmony, dissonance - each gives
vitality and sincerity to what I hear.
Their fur-covered heads, thrown skyward,
releases a heart full of sound.
Ears like feathers erect in the moonlight.
“Come join me - Gather in my circle,”
as family around a piano.
“Sing this song.” “Do you know… ?”
Sing until every familiar tune is exhausted.
Make your own harmony, descant,
and aria. Sing out of sheer pleasure!

This is the coyote chorus.
Any may listen… or none,
for they sing for themselves.
I lean back, close my eyes, and listen.

Plover Lover – October 2009

Monday, October 26, 2009

Success! Thanks to Community Effort

Who you goin' to call?

Well, not ghost busters. The Karval community hosted an impressive half-day for Partners for Conservation. Visitors from several states converged on the town. Ranchers, government agency representatives, and local students let the world know where Karval was.

Russell Davis' Ranch hosted these folks throughout the afternoon. Karval High School students presented the RAW (Ranching and Wildlife) youth program for these dignitaries and impressed the crowd with their abilities. Ranching skills were demonstrated by Cole on horse back; Abby and Max showed branding and ear tagging; Mr. Jones led a roping demonstration; pond ecology of the prairie was described by Taylor and David with fish, frogs, and turtles; shelters and nest building took place under the watchful eyes of Joni, Courtney, and Taylor; and a visit to the tree pasture added a bird of a different color. Fish and Wildlife and Division of Wildlife helped to catch critters and provided excellent help in putting it all together. Additional expert presentations from the conference members were given, and much was learned and experienced.

Later in the evening, a wonderful meal was prepared for these conference attendees. Local talent from the high school and community engaged the group with energy as they presented songs of many different genres. Fun and laughter were enjoyed by all, and a patriotic tribute to our unsung heroes in the military capped the evening's numbers. Those who shared were pleased to have been so warmly received.

Local art was taken home by participants, and money was earned for the school with photography auctioned to the eager audience. An event like this was only possible through the effort of the Karval Alliance members and community members who willingly put every part of this wonderful event together. To name one is too few. To name all impossible, for someone would surely be left out.

So a great big thanks for a day well worth the effort. This is why living in Karval is so much fun.


The weeks pass so quickly as fall blends into winter. The wind howls some days. The sun warm on other days. As seen in the last post the ice and storms of winter have come early. They don't last but serve as a reminder that this summer will end. As I watch the changes the serendipitous always occurs. This time it is large flocks of Sandhill Cranes. I wrote this after such a fortunate day.

The Day the Cranes Came

The golden glow of the afternoon sun
fell warm on my skin.
The frost of morning long since gone.
High overhead the ragged “V”
of cranes drifted.
Small groups sailed together
like grey flags connected by a string.
So many scattered across the sky
north, south, east, and west.
Where did they come from?

I watched them spiral ever onward
like the change of season
marked by calendar,frost,and wing.
Now nearer, just overhead-
each long neck stretched out as an arrow,
wings fletched these shafts,
feet nocked and launched.
What message did they carry?

A melancholy cry rose on the air.
Trumpeting their arrival-
one voice followed another chanting some ancient song,
all joined in intricate intervals.
The woven sound, loud,then soft, warbled,
and rang through the air.
"Winter is on the way"
as sure as the song of cranes.

Plover Lover – October 2009

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Crystal Wonderland

Chicken wire never looked so good.

Ice glazed apple tree

Sunflowers on ice

Nine feet of crystal

Barbed wire never felt so cold and cruel

Flowers in an icy blanket

Timothy under glass

Frozen pine tree art

Delicately frosted

A perfect ice flower

Crystal Corn
Frozen where she blows

WOW! What a weekend of beauty. Nature's Ice Sculptures.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

I Heard the Corn Talking

My morning walk to school - so dark -
no moon to cast shadows in the dim predawn.
Only stars lit my path - so dark - little could be seen,
so quiet, no bird song, no hum of insect, no breeze felt on my bare hands, only the crunch of my feet on the dirt road gave life to the eerie expanse.

I rounded the corner-
I heard something unusual-
the corn field talking-
no I swear I heard them rattling on.

As I looked I saw only row upon row of khaki jackets and outstretched sleeves on tall slender frames. I turned away the sound intensified - did I catch motion out of the corner of my eye? I looked away, there. I looked back, it felt like a game of “Red Light, Green Light” with stalks of corn. I didn’t seem to be winning.

I heard dry parched throats hoarse, that crackled, and scratched faint soothing sounds. Calm voices whispered from row to row. They begged me to listen - to join them. The chorus continued as I paused now and then - until at last the sun made its grand appearance.

Then all fell silent - only a brown corn field remained, no games, no songs, and no whispers, only warm light bathed the tawny field and complemented the glowing red dawn spread as a blanket over them.

Every day I hope to catch the corn talking, bright stars shine above. My feet crunch a quiet warning. The corn, in hushed voices, tries to pretend they can fool me. Is it the song of the breeze on leaves or timid voices heard by sensitive ears? Come and listen.

Plover Lover
October 1, 2009