encounter

Driving home in the almost dark, the sky tilting from the sun at an alarming pace, one that would soon bring winter. All kinds, all manner of insects flying in every direction, their silhouettes black against the graying block of sky, silvering in my headlights, streaks on the windshield. Still a lightning bug here, or there, but never when you looked for one. Yellowed leaves of locust set loose by any hot breeze, the wrinkled limbs of those prehistoric trees jagged and broken, a fitting habitat for flying things.

I turned onto the next to last road before home, a crumbling scrim of pavement against hard clay. Ahead, a small deer with her still-spotted fawn stood blinking in my headlights. I slowed to let them pass. The doe turned to one side and bounded gently, then stopped. The fawn stood, trembling, its four hooves bent in four different directions, its knobbly knees in four more. The doe bounded back, and tried again. One leap carried her easily into the tall grass, where she turned, now, to me. Her fawn, bleating, turned towards her, then away, a staggering pirouette on the stage created by the pavement, my headlights, my gaze. We all watched as the fawn stumbled, turned, clattered directly into my stopped car. I waited to hear its soft thud against the bumper, but instead found the fawn just outside my open window, its breathy bleats whispered in my ear. While the doe watched, motionless, her fawn shook itself, knelt, then leapt across the narrow ditch and into the tall grass where, I assume, they both ran away.

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About Carolyn Ogburn

Writer, hiker, activist and gadfly. #Binder Writes @NumeroCinq555 / Blogs @pshares MFA @VCFA
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One Response to encounter

  1. Lila Wells says:

    Wow! A close encounter of the awesome kind!

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