Country Matters

Urban born and raised, lived in college towns, spent 13 years in Metropolis and worked for The Daily Planet, I am in awe of the countryside, which is where I now reside. Sightings that would mean little to locals awe me. 

I ride a small transport called a Gator because it can traverse wet ground.  Sitting on it about to go into an outbuilding I happen to see what first looks like a cat because of its tail and then a dog because of its head. It's a fox. I've never seen one. It's digging in the overgrown yard -- which I am overdue to mow -- of an abandoned cottage in the property. For some vermin, I assume. It looks playful. If it were a domestic animal I'd call and pet it. But it's a fox, what in some parts they ride to hounds to hunt.

Not here, though our neighbor killed a pair of them last year because they were eating his chickens. We keep ours in a large chicken house that has electric wire running up high to keep predators out. But this fox doesn't seem interested in an assault on the chicken house, full of plump game. And it doesn't sense or at least acknowledge my presence, though I'm close by.

It moves closer until it's several feet away, into its own thing, as if I weren't there. At one point our eyes meet. It makes no move. A few minutes later, it bounds away, done with his hunt. 

A couple of weeks earlier I'd had another encounter. My parents lie in a cemetery a short walk away and I visit them frequently. I stood in front of their graves talking to them, as I always do. And when I focused on my father's tombstone I saw a small black snake coiled right on top of where his head or heart would be. It made no move. I didn't either, fascinated by the coils. 

My mind raced with interpretation. Was it drawing energy from my father's remains? Was it a warning? A good or bad omen? Or did it merely find a convenient place to nap? I walked away from the graves and when I had a side view of the black snake's head I saw its eye was wide open. It was a deep blue.