Electric Grandmother

Maggie Croft's Personal Journal young spirit, wire-wrapped
spark electric grandmother
arc against the night

-- Lon Prater
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We have an ornamental crabapple tree in the front yard. In the spring it has bright, dark pink flowers; in the summer it begins to grow the apples, most of which fall off in the autumn.

Most people would probably rake the fallen apples up. We've considered it, but the tree is a lot cooler if you leave the apples.

During the winter, we get hungry birds that come and feed off the tree and grab the fallen apples off the ground. We also occasionally get a squirrel poking around to see what he can get. (We also leave a few apples on the apple tree in the backyard for the same reason.)

This evening we had about forty birds come and visit the tree. (I counted the best I could.) The first batch included about thirty small birds, about three inches long. They had black and white stripes on their heads and wings and yellow underbellies and tails with a bright yellow stripe at the very tip of their tails. After awhile, about 2/3 of them left and a robin red breast came to eat.

It was about this time that the neighbor's cat came over. He's incredibly fat and slow, but that didn't stop him from crouching in the corner of our yard and try to sneak up on the birds. Needless to say, he didn't get very far before the tree was free of birds. He left soon after.

A few minutes later, the robin came back and brought about eight friends with tiny speckled breasts and little yellow spiky feathers coming out of the tops of their heads.

Avadore had a great time watching and talking about the birds. Zane had a great time watching them from the window, his tale twitching.

This is just another reason why I live in Idaho.

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