November 26, 2016
Six a.m. Ice mist rises on the field across the highway. A lone, unhurried male cardinal perches on the birdfeeder and enjoys a leisurely breakfast of seeds and cherries.
Fidel is dead. I’m watching the sunrise and seeing his bearded image in my head. Remember when the national hate was Fidel and Mao? And now the world’s hate is here in the U.S., come home to roost, the neo Confederacy, and the scrawny poor boys who fought for Lee and his rich guy ilk are ready to fight for the much dumber, Simpleton Trump. When all they need to do is join hands with blacks and browns and Indians: “The Army of the Underclass and the Death of Capitalism.”
Now sleepy chickadees arrive and scold the flamed bird and juncos plow through fallen leaves.
“Consider the lilies of the field. They neither toil nor . . .”
There may not be atheists in foxholes, but there is an atheist at the window, painting the sky blue, the icy air particles pale orange, the earth a frozen crust with folded leaves for pie filling.
We are outnumbered, by ants and birds and worms and spiders and gnats and wasps and fungi and the trillion thriving bacteria in our guts—all according to evolution. Humans define evolution yet ignore its laws.
Instead we fight, with stones then atl atls then guns. We kill each other with impunity. We make myths, the fundamentally most dangerous one being, we are the image of a supernatural being, which “means” we can consume Earth and shit on it because we can, we annihilate the lilies of the field, and after the orgy of destruction, we will ascend to a Creator.
That is Conservative comedy.
We are in the last days of free speech. There are those among us who would willingly take the job of tongue cutter, censor, selector. I’m waiting.
The tufted titmice and the black-capped sparrows and the pair of red-bellied woodpeckers and the chickadees and the jays are circling the dogwood tree, following flight paths to the sunflower feeder.
Picture Simpleton Trump feeding birds, relaxing on a Mississippi Valley scenic overlook, planting trees, restoring a prairie remnant, contentedly popping seeds into his mouth.
That is comedy.
A number of people have told me they wish I would stick to Nature writing and stop rocking the boat. They mean, I think, Noah’s Ark. It is hard to rock an ark filled with all the animals of the earth, all that tonnage of shit below deck. I might rock a rowboat, but not an ark. I’m too weak, lacking in imagination, too bleeding heart.
I am just strong enough to “consider the lilies of the field,” no small irony for an atheist, and to watch the birds, the beauty of birds, the songs of birds, the majesty, as, cheerfully singing, they near extinction, the ultimate comedy, child friendly and grandchild informative.
Ice mist rises on the field across the highway. A lone, unhurried male cardinal perches on the birdfeeder and enjoys a leisurely breakfast of seeds and cherries.