Monday, October 6, 2008

The Stuff Legends are Made of

The perfect season for a mystery--when morning fog shrouds every form, and the woods and fields have grown quiet. Shorter days steal the last light from the deepest recesses of the forest.
For what we cannot see—
there is imagination.


I stepped off the leafy path last weekend, where the grass leads into the dark pine woods. Beyond the crunching of dry fallen leaves beneath my steps, it became suddenly quiet, the ground a densely woven blanket of randomly strewn green and brown needles.
Shadows stretch from the edge, inward, across them.
The lower branches forming an impenetrable fence, their long bare fingers laced together--catching my hair and clothes as I venture past them into this protected space.

It was here, last year, that I discovered our owl, as she sat on a low branch, watching, from a distant corner. We met, with only feet between us, and held each other, eye-to-eye, until she flew off in silence through the woods and beyond. Her tree stands empty now, the whitewash faded from summer rains.


So what of this skull?
Bleached bone laid neatly on the blanket of needles, nothing more to suggest how it came to rest here, in the pine woods.
And what of the cow that is without it?

It is the stuff legends are made of.

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18 comments:

Lisa at Greenbow said...

I got a little tingle of fright/anticipation with this post Nina. Fun...

I have been in a darkened pinery and felt the ghosts of winds past hiding behind the trunks. Oooooo.

Mary said...

A little spooky but typical fall evening. Long shadows and a chill - then a skull. I'd be walking home quickly.

Ruth said...

The "forensic evidence" could be woven into a wonderful fireside tale, perfect for October.

NCmountainwoman said...

Wonder what in the world the cow was doing in the dense pine woods? It is amazing what lurks in the deep forest, and you tell the story beautifully.

scienceguy288 said...

It is weird for a cow to be out in the forest. Perhaps it escaped a local ranch or something.

nina said...

But where has the remaining skeleton gone? Or was the skull dragged here from another spot?
Who drags a skull around?

crete said...

These are lovely photographs, I really enjoyed seeing them. I also liked your article Fields of Gold. You must know the song written by Sting of the band Police which goes:

Fields of Gold

You'll remember me,
When the west wind moves
Upon the fields of barley.
You'll forget the sun
In his jealous sky,
As we walk in fields of gold.

So she took her love,
For to gaze awhile
Upon the fields of barley.
In his arms she fell,
As her hair came down
Among the fields of gold.

Will you stay with me?
Will you be my love?
Among the fields of barley.
We'll forget the sun
In its jealous sky,
As we lie in fields of gold.

See the west wind move!
Like a lover's soul
Upon the fields of barley.
Feel her body rise,
When you kiss her mouth
Among the fields of gold.

I never made promises lightly,
And there have been some
That I've broken,
But I swear in the days still left,
We'll walk in fields of gold,
We'll walk in fields of gold.

Many years have passed
Since those summer days
Among the fields of barley.
See the children run,
As the sun goes down
Among the fields of gold.

You'll remember me,
When the west wind moves
Upon the fields of barley.
You can tell the sun,
In its jealous sky,
When we walked in fields of gold.
When we walked in fields of gold,
When we walked in fields of gold.


All the best

Ray

Q said...

Dear Nina,
I too am in the spooky mood of October. Spiders and shadows do trick my mind. That skull looks to have been planted...I love the wonder of it all.
Thanks for a fun walk in the woods.
The pine cone is lovely.
The feather exquisite.
BOO!
Sherry

Rambling Woods said...

It was a very wet summer here in WNY, but we have gotten enough cooler weather to help with the fall colors..I am sorry you will be missing that. I love to come and scroll down and catch up on your posts. It is sooo relaxing and very enjoyable...

naturglede said...

THat was beautiful worlds and photoes:)

Maria said...

Dear nina, I just noticed that you visited my blog recently. Thank you very much! I looked through your blog and I am glad I did. You have so many lovely pictures of Olympic National park and nature in general.THank you very much!

RuneE said...

I fully expect the solution to this when we get to M for Mystery!

Michele (Rocky Mtn.Girl) said...

Your photos are amazing and you have such a wonderful talent for writing... very creative!!

I thank you very much for dropping by my blog... it is very much appreciated.
~Michele~
Mountain Retreat

nina said...

Uh-oh.
I'm afraid I'm still figuring this one out, Runee.
Unless I come across the headless cow, I may never know exactly what this was all about!

Anonymous said...

I wonder how large the owl was that took the cow?

Susan Gets Native said...

Whoa! A barred owl ate a COW?

LOL : )

So, what...a coyote dragged a cow head into the woods? Crazy rednecks? That IS a mystery.

The Tile Lady said...

Your images were so lovely, and the narrative lyrical, as always...then I got tickled reading the comments about the headless cow! :-)

Fast Menopause Remedies said...

This is really spooky