Monday, February 28, 2011

Squirrel Watching

I realize that right out of the chutes, I hit you guys with two heavy duty blog entries.  Evolutionary theory - sorry for making you think I was going to blow myself up and die.  And, the harrowing tale of a turtle's near death experience in which we were all concerned that he would die, for after all, he was obviously no ninja.

However, death and the fear of it are integral parts of this planet's experience.  I have to keep it real and play the literary cards I am dealt (I've seen a lot of crap in my life) while walking through this world.  Furthermore, look at the plots of Shakespeare, movies and books.  The possibility of death or hardship creates tension and inspires the pen of many...

Poor little Spunky, the thinly-coated, reddish-brown neighborhood Dachshund had an obsession with squirrels.  Not much bigger than one himself, I always wondered what would happen if he caught one.  You take a big ol' buck squirrel who has had a few years building his muscles leaping from branch to branch and running from neighborhood dogs while all the while he was feasting on protein rich acorns.  Throw him up against a pampered 5 pound pooch and see what happens.  I know who my money is on. 

Spunky should have given up on squirrels and left them alone a long time ago.    But, as he aged, I think he felt his reputation was on the line since he had never caught one and was continually bombarded with such tree rats as they infringed upon his territory....

Squirrel Watching

I came upon a dog in snow,
just what he saw I did not know.
So still he sat, so long he stared,
peculiar sight but I doubt he cared.
His sole concern was in a tree,
the upper branches where squirrels might be.
I watched the tree but found it bare,
no squirrels or varmints hiding there.
I'd never seen so strange a sight,
so I came back real late at night.
Beneath the moon he held his pose,
still pointing skyward with his nose.
Life is harsh with many woes;
that stupid pooch had simply froze.
'Twas the strangest thing I ever saw,
maybe next spring I'll watch him thaw.
The moral of the story is;
avoid a fate as sad as his.
Patience is a virtue, true;
but we must know when we are through!


Sunday, February 27, 2011

The Turtle

Genesis 1:28 "Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth."

So it was written, so it has been, so it shall be.  But, let not this most favored creature status go to our heads.  And let us not wield our swords of dominion callously.  For, after all, God could have made all of us opossums, slugs or turtles.

Typically, we humans resist compliance with Divine instruction.  But, the mandate to be fruitful, multiply and subdue the earth preaches to the choir of our hedonistic souls.  Copulation and earthly conquest somehow come easier to us than turning the other cheek and dying to our own selfish desires.

Man's dominion over pre-existing ecosystems sweeps steadily on as he "fills the earth".  As he dictates the new order of the natural world, innocent life forms are often capsized in his wake.  Each new subdivision, mine included, has displaced or killed hosts of native creatures.

In my travels on area roads I have taken to heart the aftermath of numerous automobile-animal encounters.  On one such trip a certain resident recieved a stay of execution,

Belly-up, a foot or two from the center line of the road is probably not what the turtle had in mind as he set out to cross to the other side.  I can only surmise that a passing vehicle clipped him with a tire and popped him air-born.  Gravity and the hard asphalt bounced him around to his "resting" position.

Helpless, the best the reptile could "hope for" was another precise, glancing tire blow that would flip him upright.  More realistically, however, one of the frequent, large construction or asphalt trucks - which have little wiggle room on the narrow two-lane road - would pancake him into an organic Frisbee.

Never really in to Frisbee, I turned around at the next intersection and headed back to the turtle; apprehensive of what I might find.  To my relief, he was not physically damaged - still lying there powerless, undignified and exposed.

To the south, the direction from which he fled - bulldozers and earthmovers busily raped his former terra firma as a new housing edition was underway.  To the north was what the turtle percieved to be an oasis of escape, but it was simply the outskirt of of an established housing edition; man-made berms sodded and speckled with transplanted sumac, shrubs and pine.

As far as ecosystems go, this one was surreal and hollow like a studio desert scene from an old western TV series.  To add insult to the turtle's near injury the place was entitled one of those incongruous names like "Deer Run", "The Forest" or "The Wilderness."

Stopping my vehicle, I got out and plucked the "clammed up" shell-dweller from the gravity of the road.  Exercising my God-given dominion, I subjugated the creature to the bed of my pickup.  He would not be road-kill this day.

I drove him a few miles to a less congested area.  Taking him in hand, I walked through the field of a man I did not know, to a patch of timber in which I'd never been.  As the late September cicadas belted out their monotonous, unified, two-syllable swan song, I placed that community's newest resident on the forest floor and walked away.

As dusk fell in this fallen world, I departed, longing for the day when the Good Shepherd rules; a day when lions lay with lambs, and turtles always make it to the other side.

M.G. Sparks

Friday, February 25, 2011


I am compelled as I originate M.G. Sparks' blog, to ponder a more important origin.

Let me get this straight.  Billions of years ago, before the dawn of man, a gargantuan, lifeless blob of unknown origin or purpose was floating around as it frittered away its light-years.  For reasons unknown, this blob of lifeless mass spontaneously exploded in space, chaotically fragmenting into innumerable stars, planets, galaxies and solar systems. 

Out of this devastating melee arose the orderly, synchronized universe we know and love today.  Oh - I see, order was spawned by disorder.  This makes sense.  I've seen lots of explosions.  Often times the matter that is fragmented, pulverized and vaporized by the blast transforms itself into what would seem to an uneducated layman to be an engineering marvel.  Yep, there's just somethin' about an explosion that puts things in order.

Just for kicks, I've blown up a couple of automobile junkyards.  I was amazed at the newly created symmetrical objects that came raining back to earth.  From just one violent, powerful, disseminating blast a previously lifeless mess of elements including drive trains, tires, upholstery and dirt, was changed into all manner of useful creations such as wristwatches, basketballs, compasses, amoebas and such.

If a little junkyard blast can create a round basketball, it's no stretch to believe that the "scientifically" speculated "big bang" blast could have created, among countless other wonders, a round earth!

Likewise, my  junkyard explosions proved that watches and compasses are not always as well engineered as first believed.  They can sometimes come about by random, mindless forces such as an explosion.  Therefore, it's no stretch to believe that the earth's marginally more complex synchronicity of planetary alignment, gravitational pull, seasonal preciseness, etc. resulted from a chaotic, designerless...POW..."BIG BANG".

The guy that first came up with the Big Bang Theory, whomever he was, was no idiot.  Obviously, at some point he became evolutionarily superior to men of his time.  Perhaps he, like the first exploding space mass, was jump-started by his own "big bang" experience - a harmonious restructuring of sorts.

Maybe someone violently beat this guy over the head several times with a big steel pipe.  These "big bangs" experienced by this "scientist" probably caused a new chaotic but superior alignment of his cranial contents, thereby transforming him into a visionary genuis!  New and improved, our scientist - who again, was no idiot - garnered an intellectual prowess that could better understand the complex origin of life on earth.

Wow - I'm convinced this "big bang" theory is no theory at all.  I'm ready to snuggle up to a lit stick of dynamite just to see how far I can climb the evolutionary ladder.  The sky's the limit!

M.G. Sparks