High Water

This morning a porcupine watched the little dog and I leave for a hike. This American version of a hedgehog had tucked itself away among the limbs of our apple tree. I probably should have used a water hose to drive it away. But the little guy looked so peaceful, almost saint-like. Besides, at the moment it wasn’t breaking branches or eating twigs. Porky would leave on its own time, before Aki and I returned from today’s adventure. 

            We drove out the North Douglas Highway to Fish Creek. No salmon fought for spawning space beneath the walking bridge. None could hold their own against the rain-swollen creek current. The high water had flushed the gravel bars clean of decaying fish. There was nothing to attract eagles or ravens. When we moved toward the pond I could hear an eagle scream but saw only clouds reflected in the surface waters. 

            A strong tide flooded the creek side meadow, creating a temporary reflecting pond that captured clouds trying to block out the run above the Douglas Island ridge. Two eagles sulked in creek-side trees. One turned its head, as if to ignore us. The other dropped low over the inundated meadow and flew off toward the glacier. 

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