MORNING IN THE FOREST
Deep inside the forest patches
of sunlight filter through
the treetops as they hit
the ground covered with dew.
The morning has awaken as
the animals begin to stir.
The owl retreated to a tree
and sleepy eyes overpower her.
Tiny chipmunks are frolicking
and scampering on the ground;
Little striped bodies move freely
with just the slightest sound.
A sound that's quite joyful is
echoing through the trees:
Songs bursting from the birds
singing to the day with ease.
In the edge of the forest
proudly stands a mother doe
who is carefully watching her
twin fawns that she loves so.
A coyote is slowly wandering,
looking as beautiful as can be
as he continues on his
stroll and enjoying being free.
A large black bear is feeding
on some berries that he found;
tasting sweet and delicious
he gobbles quite a few down.
Glorious morning in the forest
on a bright summer day;
the animals enjoy the peace
in their own special way.
Stacy Smith (c) 2001
THE GREAT ACTOR
Watching a nature show, I was amazed,
As I watched two creatures fixed in a gaze.
One was a bobcat, the other a hognose snake.
One of their lives was truly at stake.
The bobcat wanted the snake for a meal.
He swatted at the snake he intended to kill.
Then something clever by this snake was done,
As he rolled on his back and his brilliance begun.
He played dead with a scent smelling like decay.
Would this fool the cat and send him on his way?
A decaying carcass could make him sick,
So the snake as a meal he wouldn't pick.
After another stare the bobcat parted.
Back to his belly the snake then started.
His life was spared by his convincing act.
Intelligence this snake sure didn't lack.
Stacy Smith (c) 2001
AN INSPIRATION CAME ON WINGS
One summer evening driving down a busy street,
I caught sight of something that was a real treat.
We were moving slow for we had just stopped at a light,
The timing of the event couldn't have been more right.
A raptor flew down and on a building's roof he did perch,
But not just any building - he was on a church.
My daughter told me that she saw the bird too.
The brown beauty was a hawk and was in clear view.
Just hours before, I was writing a poem about the bird.
But I didn't get far - couldn't find the right words.
What I saw was an inspiration that made my heart soar.
Only a short time to view the hawk - I wanted more.
A few seconds is all I had of the spectacular sight,
But those few seconds was of joy and pure delight.
I drove by minutes later and the raptor was gone.
He took to the sky - where his destiny carries on.
Stacy Smith (c) 2001
"OLD BOB WHITE"
Old Bob White's a funny bird!-
Funniest you ever heard!-
Hear him whistle,-"Old-Bob-White!"
You can hear him, clean from where
He's 'way 'crosst the wheat-field there,
Whistlin' like he didn't care-
Whistles alluz ist the same-
So's we won't fergit his name!-
Hear him say it?-"Old-Bob-White!"
There! he's whizzed off down the lane-
Gone back where his folks is stayin'-
Hear him?-There he goes again,-
James Whitcomb Riley
THE MOOSE MARSH
The boggy lake is choked with reeds
And other kinds of water weeds.
It's here the water lilies grow
And spread their pads. The flowers glow
A creamy white. The centers hold
A lovely fragrance in their gold.
Where are the moose who often may
Start feeding at this time of day?
A cow and calf I sometimes see.
A mighty male wades eagerly
Into the middle where he dips
And pulls at roots with leathern lips.
I like to see their big heads rise
Adorned with plants. The water flies
In shining droplets through the air
And runs in rivers from their hair.
His Roman nose held high, he'll peer
To see what creatures might be near,
But it will take a lot before,
He will wade back to the shore.
So, I retire when they're there,
Unless I feel they aren't aware
That I am spying from the trees.
But not today, for none of these
Ungainly neighbors are around
And as I walk the boggy ground,
I wonder if they just might be
Spying from the trees, on me!
Betty Lou Hebert (c) 1998
A WETLANDS WORLD
Beyond our yard lies lower land
And here creek water backs to stand,
Creates a large and shallow pond,
A wetlands world, of which I'm fond.
It's here the large pond lily thrives.
A beaver builds his lodge and dives
To eat the roots he finds so sweet.
I see the ducks with paddling feet
Who come to eat the flower seeds.
A cautious white-tailed deer who feeds
Upon the wide and tender leaves,
And here a fat, brown muskrat heaves
Himself out on the bank to dry.
A squirrel is scolding from nearby.
I often see the masked raccoon
And listen to the haunting tune
Of water birds, unknown to me,
Because they call at night, you see.
I watch them live here undeterred,
Not threatened yet by deed or word,
And make a vow that while I'm here,
Their lives will not be touched by fear!
Betty Lou Hebert (c) 2000
Out in the field, where ground squirrels run
And close to setting of the sun,
A badger often comes to find
A dinner of his favored kind.
We see the dirt fly far and wide,
As he is burrowing inside
Existing tunnels, on his way
To rooms where he will find his prey.
Sometimes we see him in daylight,
Although it's not a common sight.
Intent upon some plan, no doubt
And following a definite route.
His shaggy fur of gray and black
Lies thick upon his sturdy back.
It ripples as he runs around
And hangs down nearly to the ground.
His face is marked in black and white.
He is ferocious in a fight.
His long, front claws, are so designed
For digging burrow homes, then lined,
With grasses to provide a bed
And here his young are born and fed.
In prairieland he likes to dwell.
It suits his lifestyle very well!
Betty Lou Hebert (c) 2001