Monday, July 13, 2009

Quiet in the summer woods

Roundtop’s woods were quiet this weekend. I didn’t see any life-and-death dramas, find any rare birds or see anything unusual. That means it’s mid-summer, that nearly-static time of the year where nothing much happens.

The black raspberries are over, a few leaves on the poison ivy are already turning red, the great-horned owl still calls from deep in the forest. The promised storms brought a few sprinkles of rain but no major downpours. The sound of thunder slid past to the north, the storm never reaching the cabin. Quiet on the mountain seems to be the rule of the day. Or perhaps the week.

I tell myself to enjoy the lull, to appreciate the quiet, but I’m finding it hard to do. I don’t think I’m geared for quiet. I have trouble getting past the idea that now is simply boring. I know the quiet won’t last, and I also know that at some point I will long for quiet but for some reason that doesn’t help me now.

The forest itself doesn’t mind the quiet. The oaks don’t long for wind or storms or change. The forest residents take the quiet moments as they come. Perhaps, in some future year, I too will learn this skill, this ability to accept the day for what it is. It’s a lesson I am still working on.


The-Grizzled-But-Still-Incorrigible-Scribe-Himself! said...

There probably wasn't much rain left over for you by the time it moved from here! Yesterday morning the river was up about four feet—though today it is well down, with the tops of the flooded grass and weeds already showing again. But still muddy.

It's not quiet here, though—lots of birds and bird noise, including a passel of hummers jousting around the feeders; cicadas, too (heard my first one of the season this morning) and squirrels, and the river's voice and wind in the trees…nope, definitely not quiet. I suppose, though, in the deep woods like where you are, it is much, much quieter. I don't know that that would bother me, however. I'm lucky—the waterside is attractive to wildlife year around, plus I have lakes and ponds less than a mile from here, a pocket of native prairie a few hundred yards away, and all the busy shopping sprawl of typical suburbia within a five-minute drive, should a lunatic impulse inflict me with the sudden need to smell hot asphalt and exhaust fumes, and surround myself in big-box retail arenas amid hordes of rabid, ill-mannered consumers.

Carolyn H said...

Griz: the storms dropped 3" to the north of me. I haven't heard any cicadas yet. i saw squirrels yesterday--but they were quiet and didn't even harass the cat sitting at the window. No breeze either, so it really IS quiet.

Cathy said...

Oh I wish i could say that Sat night was nice and quiet. Two lines of thunderstorms came through. In the second one, one the crack of thunder sounded like a bomb went off and shook the house too.

Carolyn H said...

Cathy: i saw the radar on Saturday night and wondered if you were getting hit with those storms. As long as it was no worse than making the house shake...

Carolyn h.