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Writing Ruminations

Writing is such an internal process. Why not make those private ruminations public? This is how stories take shape and grow.

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Location: Happy Valley, Oregon, United States

I've been supporting myself as a writer for many years and am watching the changes in the publishing world with fascination. For me, sharing the craft, teaching, is as creatively satisfying as the writing process itself.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Winter News Writ in Snow

One of the things I love about snow -- when we get it -- is my chance to step into my dogs' world and read the morning news with them. Usually I watch as they criss cross the field and hedgerow, following this invisible trial, pausing to carefully consider this spot on the ground that has no meaning to me. Wishing I could ask them to translate. I track with them, so I have a conversational knowledge of Scent News, but I can't do the complex vocabulary. But this morning, ah, the newspaper was written for all of us. Now I, too, can read that coyote's hunting last night and see exactly where the resident rabbits came out from the shelter of the blackberry tangles to nibble on bark and twigs. The coyote had done her best (I think she's a she, judging by the size of her tracks and the way she and my rottie bitch cuss each other out at night. She doesn't talk to the boys that way) to find her way in to that protected bit of dinner and my dogs and I followed in her footsteps. The thorns had done their job, though, and she left disappointed. Then we found the small circular patch of scuffed snow and a bit of churned up earth. The tuft of reddish fur told more, along with the lack of coyote tracks. Redtail and fox squirrel, life for one at the expense of the other? I don't think it was an owl, the scuffed space was redtail-sized and the gnawed flakes of a fir cone on the nearby fence post filled in the rest of the story. The redtail has been hanging out here this winter and the squirrel traffic in my bird feeder has diminished accordingly.

Later on today, we'll go back in the woods and read some more news. The deer hang out there, so we'll go find their beds from last night and see what they're eating. I bet they came up to the stock tank to drink this morning -- it has a heater in it, so the water is above freezing. Usually I get to read this news second hand, watching my dogs follow that invisible writing, filling in with what hints I get from where the trails take them. Today, I get to read, too.


Blogger Jean said...

What a cool (no pun intended) way to spend the morning:--)


9:36 AM  

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