Monday, March 26, 2007

Pleasure Moves On Too Early

A bobcat came into the yard Saturday, in the middle of a gray and drizzly afternoon. I was on the phone with my mom, when Roger said, "Hey there's some kind of animal in the yard." I looked out, and at first thought I was seeing the back of a good-sized dog. Roger said, "It's a bobcat!" I yelled into the phone, "Bobcat-- gotta go," hung up, and picked up the camera. Roger picked up the binoculars. We watched. It moved confidently, though it did not stop to sniff a single thing. Only a scant 42 seconds passed from the time we first saw it to when it was completely out of sight. It made me think of a line from Joni Mitchell's song Down to You "...pleasure moves on too early..."
We've had bobcats in and around the yard several times over the past three years. This one looked to be larger than the others. Roger measured the fence to try to determine how tall this one was-- nearly 28 inches. The other one we could measure by the fence was only 20 inches.
This bobcat surprised us by leaping with incredible agility to the top of the wooden fence post to exit. The other cats we saw had climbed through the wire openings in the field-fencing. We surmised that this cat was simply too large to fit through as the others had.
Once it leapt down to the other side, it sauntered just along the fence before veering off quietly into the trees.
Then it was gone, like all ephemeral pleasures. All that was left was our wildly beating hearts and gratitude that we have been so incredibly lucky over the years to have seen these furtive and beautiful little predators.

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