Tuesday, December 13, 2005


Laffing Horse Farm is about a half mile from the Timpas creek and a long, meandering wildlife area. It is a great place to go walk, and we enjoy seeing the deer, beaver, owls, hawks, badger and rabbits who share our spot on this planet.
We have 5 distinct packs of coyotes within singing distance. Their song is eerie and poignant. It is unique — so many sounds in their nightly opera are not created by any other animal. They don't sing much in the summer, but now, with winter Solistice looming and the full moon waxing, they fill every night with their voices.
I would enjoy the nightly music much more if we didn't raise sheep, goats, chickens and rabbits - all high on the coyote menu. We have had quite the bloom of mice lately, so I think there are enough of them around to keep the coyotes fat and we still see signs of wild rabbits, so I try not to worry.
But still, the guard llamas have been earning their hay lately, if only by giving me peace of mind. Most nights we go to bed and turn on the fan in front of the window to cover the noise of the coyote song.
This morning, Quigley woke me up about 3:00 a.m., saying he need to go out. I let both him and Anniken out. The night was mostly quiet, with occaisional coyote yips and dog barks. Then about 4:30 Scraps woke me up to say that the "boys" were home. I opened the front door a crack, and didn't see any dogs. So I stepped out on to the porch. The morning air was frosty, but not uncomfortable. I settled the door quilt back in and shut the door and turned around.
A giant, bright, yellow, stunning moon sat on the western horizon like a spotlight. It took me a minute to understand what that light was, it was so bright and yellow. As I stepped off the porch, the full force of the night hit me. Sound from every direction, the eerie light was full of sound. Coyote song from every hill and dip filled the darkness. All the dogs for miles around joined in with their barks and howls. My two dogs were sitting on the berm across the driveway, back on their haunches, moaning low and long.
I thought I'd gone out the wrong front door onto a different planet.
Before the sense of unreality could sink in too deeply, I called the "boys" and we went back in to the warm, dark house and warm soft bed.
Still, I never really went back to sleep, and this morning is starting out just a wee bit skewed...
What is reality anyway?

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