Second One Act Play: Return to the Bog

Act One, Scene One.

Setting: The forest road, a two-mile walk from the closed gate.

Sound effects: Chickadees singing cheeseburger songs and White-throated Sparrows inquiring about Sam Peabody, Peabody, Peabody.

Props: Birch, maple and aspen trees leafing out.

Cast: Mourning Cloak butterflies in full mourning regalia.

Scene Two.

Setting: A bog.

Sound effects: Wind in the trees, a certain Grackle with a regular rusty-gate note; turtles plopping into water; Canada geese honking like bullfrogs.

Cast: Western Conifer Seed Bug upon a wooden wildlife blind.

Stage clothes: Dressed to the nines in a traditional afternoon ensemble.

Scene Three: Flowers of the bog.

Set decorations: Hobblebush in flower and featuring a crab spider in the wings.

Sessile-leaved Bellwort showcasing its flowerhead in a subtle manner.

The cast grows: one Painted Turtle.

Two Painted Turtles.

Four plus Painted Turtles.

Scene Four.

Setting; a tree snag.

Cast: a Grackle posing beside a potential nesting site.

Scene Five.

Cast: An American Wigeon located at twelve o’clock in the circle of Canada Geese.

Main character: Female American Wigeon donning a warm brown body, grayish head with smudge around her eye, and pale bill tipped in black.

Supporting characters: Canada geese in preening mode.

Action: The Wigeon swims back and forth as the geese preen.

Has perhaps the duck imprinted upon the geese?

She watches every movement as she munches upon the bog grasses.

This is the second in one act plays dramatized at the bog where the Wigeon’s behavior is questioned by humans but hardly by the geese.

Stay tuned for the next one act play as life plays out at the bog.

Shrouded By Fog

“It was a dark and dreary day.”

Like a thin veil, this morning’s fog attempted to hide Miss Spring.

But instead, it revealed her nuances and enhanced her being as the birds sang and amphibians added their voices to the chorus.

As I listened, I peeked through the thinnest of openings to see what the world wanted to reveal.

Weaving all of life together were the silken lines of spider webs.

Beads of water enhancing their forms.

And the creator turned out to be the most minute of beings.

Flowing forth the remains of melting snow, the stream spoke of nourishment.

Its action creating frothy suds that cleansed.

And within its bubbles the world above was reflected.

The surrounding landscape was mirrored in the drips of raindrops.

Everywhere, there were treasures indicating what is to come . . . in the form of Hobblebush buds growing more global;

Trailing Arbutus showing a glimmer of new life;

And Beaked Hazelnut presenting its most subtle, yet exquisite floral presentation.

As I continued to look about, something different caught my eye.

A moth recently emerged from its cocoon* spoke to another form of new life.

What I learned today is that one needs to watch.

Wait.

And be ready.

Though she has been shrouded, her veil is slipping away. I was grateful to discover that Miss Spring surrounds us when we make the time to look–even on dark and dreary days.

*The moth–I knew it was such, but didn’t know what kind. Upon arriving home, I did some research and the best I could come up with was the worst–Operophtera brumata, or the invasive Winter moth. But . . . I wasn’t 100% convinced of my ID so I reached out to fellow Master Naturalist Anthony Underwood. This was his response: “Don’t panic yet, Leigh. I’ve seen this before. It’s a newly eclosed moth, yes, eclosed. Probably a Sphinx moth. I wasn’t familiar with the term until I encountered one for myself a while ago. Your vocabulary is likely more extensive than mine but just in case I’ll clarify by explaining that it means that it has emerged from its winter cocoon and is looking for a place to pump its blood into those wings and expand them for first flight. Good find!