Monday, August 24, 2009

The Blue Heron

Journal for Christa, (from July 3, 2009)

The blue heron sits on the neighbor's roof—
waiting, patient, stealthy.
The curs`ed bird.
The fish have stopped their spawning.
How do they know he's there?
They've sunk to the bottom—
motionless, waiting, waiting.
I watch from the window—
I, too, waiting...

Jay says the blue heron is the most patient animal God created; one can also consume a 10 inch fish every 3 minutes, according to his Internet research. We had backyard ponds for years and were never bothered by them. Maybe it was because we had a real dog, a sheltie, not the little Molly dog of our old age. Regardless, a few years back, one discovered our sanctuary.
The large and majestic blue heron. He quite reminds me of a bad habit—one you really need to get rid of—but just when you think you have it licked, there it is again.

One year we netted the ponds through June, and that seemed to work; then he was back— so has been our saga with the big bird. Last year Jay meticulously strung rows of monofilament (fishing line) from the deck to the house. We were surprised that most people didn’t even notice it overhead. Then in May this spring, I opened the sliding door to catch him perched on a support board that held the winter netting. There he was, again, much to my dismay.

Everyone has a blue heron. They vary—things we shouldn’t, but do—things we should but don’t. Things we thought we had a handle on and then, when we least expect it, there it is—our personal blue heron.

Blue herons are beautiful creatures—and to see one spread its expansive wings and lift into the air can almost take my breath away…but, not if he has my fish in his throat. We can’t give up fighting our blue herons, whatever they are. Every time he appears, Jay threatens to “throw in the towel,” fill in the ponds, and be done with it. But, next morning, he always has a new plan.

In the book of Esther, King Xerxes had a garden with hangings of blue and white linens. Jay has one with hanging trellises of monofilament. King Xerxes was only interested in making impressions; Jay’s looking after his fish. I think it’s best we watch after the fish.

“Let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.”
Galatians 6:9 (KJV)

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