Parker Memo

Every day I take two walks through the garden. The morning walk finds me with a paper and pencil to note plant progress and chores that need to be done. This morning, I watched Eurasian Collared Doves build their nest. Notorious for being slap hazard nest builders I know it won’t take them long. The nest consists of very few sticks and some long pine needles. On top of this precarious jumble, they lay two white eggs that Wallis, the dog, laps up when they fall. In my view, their love for one another and the care they give the young that do survive, redeem them.

There are no bees out because it’s early and they need warmth to fly. Instead, the morning belongs to the sparrow. We have hundreds of sparrows. This year, I identified the White-Crowned Sparrow; only because I looked straight at him in the feeder one day and he blurted out his distinctive call right in my face. I have been listening to this bird for years and now I finally know who it is. Walking on, I notice owl pellets under the spruce, a sign of their winter presence, but they are gone now, the branches that protected them are empty. The ravens are up early too. If it’s sunny, I sit on one of my garden chairs and bare my forearms in the sun. The rest of me is always covered, and I need my vitamin D. I read and prioritize my list, ready to start the day.

The second walk I take is when the sun’s angle lights up the shadows in the afternoons. At this time of year, the light is magic around 4pm. The hyacinths are like jewels; the bees, now very much awake, are all over them. The crab trees have the beginnings of leaves, and it’s true; spring is really/maybe coming. The beams of light against the dark branches and every perfect shape and form etch memories. Work, oh yes. Joy, oh yes.


Monika and the Boys