An English In Kentucky


















Sunday February 10th 2013    Tim Candler

    The Alatus, or Invasive Burning Bush, or The Winged Euonymus, all depending upon perspective, is now without fruit.   And the Privet is bare, all except a few stubborn leaves and one or two shriveled berries.   Gaunt at last, they look.  But the Close Mockingbirds, both appear fit enough when I saw them earlier this evening.  They were sitting in their empty larder watching each other, waiting for the rain and wind and maybe a thunderstorm, perhaps hail, and possibly a little snow in time for Asteroid DA14.  A duller name one cannot conceive of.

    I don't believe Privet Berries are  favorite food for a Mockingbird.  On through the first deep frosts of December and into the cold the Close Mockingbird guarded his shrubbery.  He was fierce about it, and I can forgive myself for thinking  it's just his way. The Berries will go to waste, I say to him. They'll dry up or something like a Mouse, or a Waxwing will eat them, and no one really wants that..  Then all of a sudden, you'll see the Close Mockingbird and his gentler collaborator, together in the branches of the Privet feeding in a sort of pain filled manner.  Neither of them in the least happy. Or maybe they just feel guilty.  Or perhaps Privet Berry causes indigestion. This year it was the last weekend of January, ice in the sky, the Privet was still full of food.  Fifteen days later, it's pretty much all gone.

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