Sunday, October 16, 2011

The Blue Coyote

I walked out into a steady mist two days ago and stopped at the field at the top of my street. The green grass was more vibrant because of the rain: it was yellow-green and there were scratchy areas of autumnal-sepia herbs and dried seed heads scattered on the tops of the swells. It was about 7:30 a.m.

I spotted a young coyote a few hundred yards away. It blended into the vegetation but once identified, it was plain to see and observe. Of course, it immediately sensed me and kept its distance. It then loped this way and that trying to determine if I was a credible threat. I had taken my sketchbook out and was jotting down the basic geometry. The charcoal and the blue pencil running in the mist and drizzle.

He trotted farther and farther away, sniffing, reconnoitering all the while. Never fleeing, the coyote made his escape firmly in control of his own reality. I stayed on longer trying to capture the moment and then turned to follow the path into the forest.

"The Blue Coyote"
charcoal, colored pencil, crayon, coffee
Could this be the coyote that absconded with my one year old cat this past summer? That's another story!

I tried to sketch the trees in the forest. Well, I didn't try. I actually did draw what I saw in the forest. Everything was so beautiful. The water droplets on my paper resisted the waxy black crayon and made it seem like I was drawing a snowstorm. Later, I added notes of different things I was thinking about. And what was that? Kitty Crother's wonderful illustrations for "Le petit-home et Dieu" that was published in 2010 by Pastel, a French publisher. Besides being a master story teller, she draws great forests too. So I was thinking about that.

the solo swan, a teen ager perhaps?
I've had the pleasure of observing a family of swans this summer on Lake Waban (accessible by this forest path and part of the Wellesley College campus). There are two adults and four dirty gray offspring. They mostly mind their own business and stay close together along the North edge of the lake. But on the way back home, I spotted this lone soul, an immature swan, looping around at the other end of the lake busily scrounging for the things that swans like to eat. Why was it all alone while the others were together?

Maybe there's a story in that?

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