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Burrowing Owl (graphics and text by A. Leon Miler)

October 1, 2011

In the desert morning as the sun breaks the eastern edge of the sky, it turns all things golden, purple and red.  This lasts for a very short time, for as the sun rises up, the light goes to the white that we know much better.  On the far side of the ridge they dig perlite out of the ground, but in other times past, they dug for silver and gold.  What was left behind were empty tunnels, and the quiet of the desert wind.  The owls were there before the shafts were tunneled into the mountain, and their descendants are still there.

The miners mostly died poor, and their names have mostly blown away never to be gathered again in this life.  The riches they dug so hard for are buried away in a vault somewhere I suppose, but that’s the way it goes.  The Psalmist wrote that “the meek shall inherit the earth…” Until then the owls will occupy it, dig their own small shafts, raise their young, and never look for the silver and gold because, frankly, they can’t eat it.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. October 4, 2011 4:17 am

    You should have run your article by the descendants of J.E. Smith. But other than that, oh, the owl is looking at me. He’s giving me an enigmatic stare as if to tell me, “Stop correcting my grammar, for I have been here longer than you.” Too-hoo, too-hoo.

    • October 11, 2011 2:15 am

      There are far too many homonyms in the English language. And what are they good for?

      Puns mostly.

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