Wet-Toes the Rabbit

Rabbit tracks on blue snow

Wet-Toes the rabbit hops,
scrapes snow from grass,
dodges grumpy crows,
and wriggles his cold nose.
Blue day breaks the dark,
and newcomers arrive.
Lop-Ear, he knows,
but following him is Rose.
Lop-Ear’s sister is peachy pale,
with silky fur and eyes of blue.
The sharp Nor’easter blows,
but does he feel it, old Wet-Toes?
Enchantment is all he knows.
Warmth has the name of Rose.

Copyright 2016 Brenda Davis Harsham

chaos of rabbit tracks

Note: Do you ever see a story in the snow, hear romance in wind song or imagine characters from thin air?

“If you never did you should.
These things are fun.
And fun is good.”
— Dr. Seuss

Thanks to Dr. Seuss for his whimsy, rhyming, hokey bunkum, soft soap, hullabaloo and malarkey. Most of all, thanks to him for making the world a better place.

Happy Birthday, Theodor Seuss Geisel!!

Gnome Grown

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Sprig Gnome tends his woodland garden. Thistle shears help him prune raspberry canes. He mulches fungus shingles atop his den, waters moss, and collects dinner. Before his basket is full, a shadow darkens the glade. He ducks and dodges but all goes awry. Ida Owl grasps him in her talons, and she lowers her yellow eye.

“I’m done for!” Sprig howls. “Save me!” Will anyone hear him?

“Sprig, save it! I need your help.” Ida Owl grouches. “A splinter in my claw is driving me mad!”

“I see it.” Sprig extracts it with a yank of his thistle shears.

Ida hops side to side, flexing and gyrating. “Oh, what a relief. I must thank you properly. Hop on.”

Is she serious? Can he trust her? Sprig stows his basket. He climbs up her feathers like a ladder.

“That tickles!” Ida giggles. Then she flaps powerful wings. Sprig’s stomach bottoms out as they rise. Winds swirl and flow until Sprig worries that he’s seen his last night. He holds tight. They bank and loop. They hoot and holler. The air smells of crushed apples. He reaches toward stars as if they were snowflakes.

An owl and a gnome make the least-likely of friendships. News travels the meadow like a brush fire. A gnome is riding an owl! Unheard of! Unthinkable! Sequester Squirrel follows, swinging tree limb to ivy vine. Dentbottom Rabbit has to see it with his own rheumy eyes, and his great-granddaughter holds his arm. Dinwald Stag-King brings his large tribe to gape.

When Sprig lands, he feels as if the earth has stopped orbiting the sun. The air is too still. He waves good-bye to Ida, and follows fireflies into his den. His feet find each lump in the maple leaf carpet. His thistledown bed is squashed and untidy. He snips, clips and mixes until his forage stew bubbles and sings. The air fills with the scent of braising brined beetles. But he misses the scent of crushed apples and owl feathers.

Copyright 2016 Brenda Davis Harsham

Note: We’ve been enjoying a lovely thaw like spring is visiting February. It makes me wish I could fly. I hope your dreams take you on fun flights of fancy tonight. Warmly, Brenda

Ode to Baby Kale

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Tiny green fans,
For cooling a sprite,
A nibble for children:
A snack to delight.
First, soaked as seed,
Then planted in soil,
Watered and lit from above,
Sprouted into a tiny coil.
Two oval leaves
Reached for the light,
Edges becoming scalloped
With veins of bright white.
Baby green kale,
Planted between sage,
Chives and thyme,
Becomes an herbal mage,
With the power
Of flavor and health,
Until devoured by rabbits
With predawn stealth.

Copyright 2015 Brenda Davis Harsham

Note: This ode is to my baby kale, photographed prior to devastation by bunnies, insatiable little beasts. They seem to prefer the things I grow from seed to any clover or sweet grass. They never eat my chives.

Purple blooming chives

The Lost Magical Power

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Jason had a secret, and he did not tell anyone. He knew how to keep a secret. He knew if he walked behind the bush in his backyard, he would be on his secret road. Every time he walked on this road, it took him to a new place.

One very windy day, he took a step on his secret road while his father was talking to the neighbor. The road carried him through hills, down valleys and over stone bridges. He followed it until he heard singing.

“I’m a sprite day and night, my feet are light, and my eyes are bright. The sky is blue, the wind smells new, but I don’t know who could be so true,” a pretty voice sang high and sweet. Jason saw the sprite, slender as a willow branch and dressed in all the colors of the valley. She had a red dress like one hundred roses, blue tights like river water, and green bracelets like rings of grass. She was dancing and twirling in a green meadow surrounded by purple flowers and Queen Anne’s Lace. She stopped singing and dancing when she noticed Jason, standing on the secret road. “Hello. Are you true?” The sprite asked Jason.

“I don’t know what you mean,” answered Jason, feeling a bit confused.

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