The photo came out a little blurry, but I was delighted to catch a glimpse of this little opossum neighbor, while I was sitting in the screen tent a few mornings ago. When it saw me, it speeded up its walk near the underbrush at the back corner of our yard. I understand that opossums eat ticks, among many other things, so I was glad to see it our neighborhood.
Reading more about them, I learned that they can also eat food from bird feeders and fruit trees. They are nocturnal. It will be an interesting balancing act–we intend to grow food for ourselves, yet we also love the critters that show up in this space we share. But perhaps that is the heart of the question–how do we live as neighbors in this land, rather than colonizers/occupiers/dominators? How do we care for our own needs, while also caring for the needs of other beings on this earth?
So I was sitting on the deck, just writing in my journal, and this little being came within a few feet, just looking at me. No fear, just curiosity. We live together in this beautiful place, and perhaps he/she is acknowledging that? Or saying “Thank you for the sunflower seeds, but why do you make them so hard to get in that crazy contraption?”
Meanwhile, our nocturnal digger has also returned, very politely avoiding the plants and digging up the paths. I am assuming it is our resident nearby skunk, though it is here earlier than last summer. This year I haven’t even been trying to straighten everything back again, unless it has dug a hole close to a plant. But as you can see, everything is getting lush and leafy–rhubarb, sea kale, turkish rocket along the back. Every tree is surrounded by herbs and clover.
This morning I wandered for an hour in the garden to feel the ground and do last minute care-taking before I fly to see my parents today. I planted some lovely basil that was a gift, watered the annual bed (and discovered some other little neighbor has eaten one of the broccoli seedlings–oh well I hope you enjoyed it), put more compost on the growing asparagus plants, and also watered the summer sweet bush cuttings that are temporarily in a pile of compost as well waiting to be planted. Margy will tend the garden while I am gone.
I am thinking of my dad today, my spirit is with his spirit during this journey. May this day be blessed with safe and smooth travels of whatever kind.