Friday, July 20, 2012

What Lies Above

I might have mentioned that I dump the dehumidifier, D'Hummi, every night. Most often, it's around midnight or two a.m. I'm a night owl. The Pony takes care of daytime duty. Mostly. I don't mind stepping outside, through the basement door, under the back porch in the wee hours. Hearing the after-hours fauna. I've never had any problems with rogue wood bees at night.

A couple of nights ago, I poured out D'Hummi's bucket, and turned to add some vinegar before resetting him. Not because I'm a sour old bag, but because it keeps him from getting scaly. I heard a noise behind me. There in the shadows of Poolio's deck was Juno! She poked her snout through the rail to lick my proffered fingers. Then cautiously picked her way down the steps to lean against my legs for a thorough petting. I mentioned the encounter to The Pony the next day.


"What do you mean?"

"That doesn't surprise me. She goes up there when I get in the pool."

"She loves you. She's watching out for you. I knew she did it with #1. He said the first time she ran around the porch whining, looking down at him. She couldn't figure out how he got there. The she went down the front steps and ran around back. She laid on the deck until he got out."

"She doesn't stay long with me."

"Why's that? Is she afraid?"

"No...I think it's because sometimes she gets wet."

"And how would THAT happen? Do you splash her? Don't be mean to that little dog!"

"I don't really splash her. But I spend a lot of time jumping in. And she gets wet."

Let the record show that Farmer H has a no-jumping policy in Poolio. I think I just discovered why The Pony always turns down Farmer H's invitations to swim with him.

Yesterday, I went out to check on The Pony's solo swimming excursion. He was in the midst of a Lonely Lazy River. He runs around in the water and makes a raft float ahead of him in his current. Or maybe he is trying to catch the raft. There's not much logic in some of The Pony's escapades.

"Where's Juno? Is she with you?"

"No. She left. But you should have seen what I saw when I came out on the back porch to climb down." The boys step over the back porch railing and shinny down onto Poolio's railing to the deck.

"What? A chicken in the dog pans eating Ol' Roy?"

"No. A black snake. Its tail was caught in a crack between two boards. Then it got loose and went over the edge right there by the spout." He pointed to the corner of the porch where the downspout is attached. The part of the porch directly over where I step out to dump D'Hummi's bucket.

"Was it a big snake? What size?"

"Smaller than the blue racer we saw on the road. I don't know where it went. I think one of the chickens ate it. But it was pretty big. One of the big roosters could have eaten it."

I. Hope. So.


Sioux said...

Ode to Snake

Oh, snake!
Your scales, so cool
on my feet
as you slither over
and past me.
Oh, reptilian friend--
your tongue darting out,
tasting the air,
just looking for prey
on that somber day.
Oh, snakey-snake,
I rue the day
that wretched rooster
ended your too-short life.
No more chances of us
on some dark evening
me with D'Hummi
and you with D'Mouse
on D'Mind...

Oh. Snake.
my scaly friend.

Kathy's Klothesline said...

Will Mr. Flashlight be joining you on future excursiond in the wee hours of the morning?

Hillbilly Mom said...

But what about the plums I left in the icebox, so sweet and so cold? And that red wheelbarrow glazed with rainwater beside the white chickens? And the snake that came to my water trough, and I in my pajamas for the heat?

Oops! For a moment there, I confused you with William Carlos Williams and D.H. Lawrence.

Well done! I crown you the official poet laureate for the Nation of Hillmomba!

Mr. Flashlight, and all his brothers, are carefully stashed. To uproot them could upset the delicate equilibrium of my sanity. I'll just leave the basement door open wide so the light shines out, and hope that no rodents scurry inside while my back is turned.