Category: nature

The Death of a Squirrel

  My mother in her old age  had a way with squirrels.  She loved to feed them,  scattering generous  pieces of bread  around the tree outside her kitchen window.  If memory serves me right—and it is some  years ago—I think a few of them even came up to her as she  offered them those  irresistible... Read more »

A Juggernaut Approaches From the North, or It Can't Be Winter Yet!

  My brain’s electric grid convulses With thousands of febrile impulses. What’s switched on my cerebral cortex? That frigid fiend, the Polar Vortex!

What a Little Birdie Told Me That I Knew All the Time

    I envy birders. Those  stalwart stouthearted sorts  who scour  the highways and byways, the woods and the wetlands—and just about everywhere else— lurking in the brush, stalking to the limits of  patience just to  catch a glance at some bird.  It’s a fascinating hobby, but, without a doubt, unbelievably challenging too.   I... Read more »

On Turtles, Vernon Hills, and Senator McConnell

  It may or may  not be a case of using their reptilian brains,  but the  good people of Vernon Hills—about 38 miles by car north of Chicago—-are putting up signs to warn drivers about turtle pedestrians. Vernon Hills is home to the Half-Day Forest Preserves in Lake County. It’s all of 7.92 square miles... Read more »

Whither the Wind? An April Poem.

The wind can be gentle, A lover’s caress. The wind can turn violent, A madman, no less. It can whisper softly. At times, can be still. And then, for no reason, In rage, it can kill.

On Behalf of National Poetry Month: "Springtime in Chicago"

  Spring is here! The buds are breaking Open on the trees and shrubs. All the world Is fresh and  new again Except the same old Cubs.

Tornado: God's Way of Creating Jobs

  A tornado creates jobs?  Think of it. New construction. Insurance claims. Medical and, maybe, psychiatric services too. Well, that  might be how some Republicans  would see it. If  I understand  their world view. Everything seems to be  about money. Profit.   About making offerings on the altar of  Mammon. I would rather look at a... Read more »

Mickey Rooney and Thomas Edison

  On Sunday Mickey Rooney gave a command performance for his Maker . I hope he got good reviews. Mickey was a genuine Hollywood movie star.  In his  salad days he was usually boffo at the  box office. Coincidentally, on the day Rooney passed on, the   Quote-Acrostic  in the Tribune’s “Life and Style” section ... Read more »

Taking a Selfie Before a Tornado Hits

  When a tornado is bearing down on you with all its fury, it’s time to seek immediate shelter. Or take a selfie.  So did a young Missouri  woman according to news reports on the Today Show this morning. It got me thinking about this peculiar malaise in contemporary culture.  Why would anyone take a ... Read more »

Marlin Perkins: A Man Noah Would Have Loved

Born today was Marlin Perkins Whose TV show combed wild lurkin’s. At the zoo, once, near the lake, He was  bitten  by a poisonous snake.   It happened at Lincoln Park Zoo in the early 1950s.  Years later he described what happened in an interview. “Another reptile mishap was less chilling but perhaps more embarrassing,... Read more »