February 5, 2014

Tansy Mustard, in bloom already at the pastures’ edges. There is much marveling in Cascabel over the many plants coming into flower weeks earlier than anyone remembers. And now a “Polka Dot Beetle” with twelve spots … which should I suppose be well and truly called Cucumber Beetle, whatever the identity of the earlier, fewer-spotted ones. Will it be a thirteen-spotted one tomorrow?

True evening Winter splendor tonight … the Galiuro ramparts are dark, all the ridges that rim, protect and tell us what is our “Cascabel” are dark, and alone out of the middle of this vast shadow-world rises Sierra Blanca from Saguaro-Juniper’s high ranges to the northeast, dazzling for some moments in the last full rays of Sun, as white as a sand dune and shaped like one, the shadows on its peak milky-green. I turn away from this grand mural hung before, over and around me, and see that Bobcat has come to join me in the pasture. It lounges, serenely, like an odalisque behind the bar in an old cow town saloon. As if a switch were thrown darkness comes, and the hovering mirage of Sierra Blanca vanishes in an instant.