Waiting Game

Three miles north of the Douglas Island Bridge a regiment of bald eagles waits. They will wait until the tide crests and then ebbs. Then they will search the exposed flats for salmon alive or dead. From the top of a grass-covered bank I watch the eagles preen, argue, or sleep while Aki wanders around sniffing and leaving scents for other dogs to sniff. She must becoming deaf to eagle screams. 

Later, we will hike down a rain forest trail to the beach, seeing evidence of a dying summer along the way. Fruit will still pull at the branches of berry bushes but many of the surrounding leaves will be fading to fall colors. The leaves of other plants will bare wounds from months of insect attacks.

           We will take a beach trail lined with stalks of dead-brown cow parsnip. I will look, without success, for splashes of color among the beach grass. Gulls will sleep on offshore rocks.  They, like the eagles will be waiting for the big salmon die off. 

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