Beneath The Cottonwood Tree (spring Arrives)
2 April, 2008
author: Rebecca Ditch-Hammack (aka Dreamer)
Herald Bluebird sang her arrival. The Whispering Wind carried his voice far and wide. Everyone in the Merry Meadow listened. Ears perked up as all the animals had been awaiting his return. No one could contain their excitement. Mother Nature was coming. It had been a long cold winter. The rain and snow and ice always made it hard for all the animals.
Scamper Squirel was extremely happy since his nut stash was starting to get low. Scamper ran out to the end of the branch which seemed almost too small for him to be on. He listened closely. Did he hear what he thought he heard?. Was it Herald Bluebird?. "Ooo Thank goodness", he exclaimed.
Hoppy, his best friend, poked her head out of their house. "What's going on Scamper?" she inquired
"Mother Nature is coming! Mother Nature is coming!" he called back to her. "I was beginning to think she had forgotten about us this year."
"Oh Scamper,you are so silly. Mother Nature never forgets us." Hoppy sat on top of their house and knawed on a big fat acorn she had brought out with her. It reminded Scamper that he had not eaten dinner yet. Watching Hoppy eat made him hungry.
He knew Ricky's Keeper had just put a couple ears of corn out on the little deck he had made next to Scamper and Hoppy's little house. He liked the corn.
He got used to Ricky's Keeper coming up close to his house. At first it used to really scare Hoppy and himself. But Ricky's Keeper never stayed or tried to harm them. So Scamper and Hoppy would just stay curled up and very still when he came so close.
He would always leave them a nice treat when he came. It was really nice of him.. Sometimes he would leave some seed for Mr Jay and Redd Cardinal. It was like a picnic when the birds came to eat with them.
Scamper ran back down the branch back toward the house. Hoppy ran up the tree thinking that Scamper was going to chase her for the acorn. But he just ran right past her to their porch and started to pick a couple kernals of corn off the corn cob.. As he pulled at a kernal he lost his hold on the ear and it fell to the ground.
Scamper looked around and didn't see any sign of Ricky running around and scurried down the tree to retrieve the corn.
"Wait for me!" Hoppy called after him as she swallowed the last bite of her acorn. She chased him down and around the tree to gather up the kernals that fell off the ear when it hit the ground.
They were busy gathering up the corn and at first didn't hear the rustling in the leaves under the bush next to the Old Cottonwood tree.
"Hi ya Scamper whatcha doing?" came a sudden voice from behind him. Scamper jumped quickly up the tree. Hoppy and Brenda Bunny burst out laughing at him. "Where ya going Scamper? I'm not going to eat you." Brenda teased.
Scamper turned around and paused for a moment taking a deep breath before moving back down the tree to the ground. "Dang Brenda you have to stop doing that." Scamper scolded. Hoppy chickered with laughter at Scamper.
"Sorry, I didn't know you didn't hear me, not like I was trying to sneak up on you" Brenda giggled
"You really should be more careful Scamper she could have been old Alley" Hoppy scolded him back.
He knew she was right and he should have been paying more attention. Old Alley would have given him a run for his life. He was lucky it wasn't that old cat.
"Wow Brenda. Look at you. You have really grown." Scamper had not seen Brenda since late last fall. Brenda fluffed her tail proudly..
"You think so? You should see Billy he is really big" she added.
"Yes, he is", Hoppy joined in. "I seen him just the other day when he wondered by. He did get really big. You two are are almost all grown up"
"I wish you would tell that to mother. She still treats us as if we are babies" Brenda munched on a blade of long green grass..
"Did you hear Herald this morning?" Brenda asked. Scamper had just grabbed the ear of corn in his mouth and started back up the tree. He flicked his tail and made a bit of a sound but he had his mouth full so they could not tell what he said.
"Yeah he must not have been far. I am really happy that mother nature is coming.I can't wait for spring." Hoppy filled the pockets of her mouth with the fallen pieces of corn.
"I better get back before Mother starts looking for me. She told me not to be long. Bye Scamper" she called up the tree
"See you later Brenda" Scamper called back as he pushed the corn cob up close to the tree so it would not fall off again during the night breezes.
"Bye Brenda, Give my regards to your Mother" Hoppy took the last fallen piece of corn in her mouth and started back up the tree to put them away for later.
"I will, see ya Hoppy" Brenda hopped back under the bush to the burrow where her family lived beneath the Old Cotton wood..
Old Mother Nature walked through the meadow. Herald sat upon her shoulder. In front of her was the grey and brown winter meadow.
As she walked the Dogwood Trees opened their buds and the flowers bowed their heads in honor of her arrival.
The Daffodil's raised their heads, blooming for her presence. The colors of spring seems to flow out from under the trail of her robes.. She painted in all the colors that showed the arrival of spring to the meadow. Everything felt a bit warmer.
It will be a nice early morning surprise for all the creatures of the meadow, the river valley and the ones that lived by the Old Cottonwood tree.
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