The Squirrellest Month

Winter’s frost? Who cares?
The challenge is to survive
spring’s depredations.

As a squirrel wobbles in the breeze atop a mere twiglet at the tip-top of my magnolia tree, I don’t even lunge for the klaxon or the slingshot by the back door. It is what it is: Maybe some blossoms will survive; maybe not. I’m done fighting rodentia irresistiblia–irresistible in the sense of a force that cannot be stopped, not in the sense of a temptation too attractive to resist–although I’m not quite done complaining about them.

Still, the universe graciously rewards even baby steps toward acceptance. A mere half hour south of town, in a protected courtyard where sun-warmed brick walls create a welcoming micro-climate, I come upon two magnolia trees in full unbothered-by-squirrels bloom.

They are, maybe, a bit past their prime (as am I, perhaps), but are lovely nonetheless (as, oh, never mind). Although it can’t be literally true that it’s always spring somewhere, some days it feels like that.

This entry was posted in Appreciating Deeply, Feeling Clearly, Photos of Flora and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to The Squirrellest Month

  1. Coming back to this gracefully aging magnolia, a new icon to embrace, after sampling further poems of A.E. Stallings, I am struck by the poetic lilt and attention to detail in the subjects of your photographic art that become metaphors for human experience, which you so beautifully articulate. Both of your prose pieces fall on my ears like poetry.

    • Isabel Gibson says:

      Laurna – Many thanks. I associated magnolias only with southern climes or our own Left Coast. Magnolias-in-Ottawa were a complete surprise to me, and a delight of the “I can’t understand why everyone doesn’t have one in their yard, just because they can” variety. I don’t think they’re been bred to brave the Prairies yet, but I live in hope.

  2. Tom Watson says:

    Every once in a while, in the shrubbery that borders our condo property, I see a squirrel that’s jet black except for the last 4 inches of its tail—that part is pure white. It’s a beautiful animal.

  3. Judith Umbach says:

    Magnolias in April! Ever more beautiful snowy scenes were what was on offer here. I have blown my mental budget for snowy scenes. On impulse, I bought red geraniums on a Mother Day special. So far, the squirrels are uninterested. Perhaps they taste as bad as they smell!

    • Isabel Gibson says:

      Judith – Snow? Oh dear. As one Ottawa artist says, the supply of Ottawa winter exceeds the demand. (P’raps in other places, too?) And he goes out in Ottawa’s winter to paint, almost every day. I never liked geraniums, but the red sounds nice.

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