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Friday, July 6, 2012

The Big Melon is Gone

Dawn, the darkness is drifting west, before the sun rises to scorch the land. Water whatever is left in the garden. Whatever the deer and the racoon have not feasted upon. The sweet peas, the green beans, the tomatoes, the flowers. The oppressive heat persists. One hundred five and counting.

There is one tomato plant that the deer haven't been able to reach, it is alone with its flowers, sitting in the pot with the bird house. Too much in the way for the face of the deer, perhaps, one tomato will grow, perhaps we will get to eat one tomato grown from the garden and not bought from the farm stand. Everything was planted early. The mild winter made it easy to work the land. We were pleased. Then the rain, gentle, yet enough to cut the hay early. All the farms were busy cutting hay, the view of the rolled bales of hay, dotting the landscape, the sign of productivity, activity and diligence. Then the sun began to warm the ground, and the rain ceased. And the heat continued into the nineties for days and days. And still no rain. The gardens were still flourishing. Flowers were crowding budding and blooming. Bright colors, reds and purples mixed with yellow and orange. And the heat continued. At dawn, out to water, before the scorch of the sun, before the bake of the day.

And then, the deer and the racoon came closer and closer, eating everything to the length of a crew cut. The gardens trimmed to the height of nine inches, enough for the plants to continue to grow. Nothing for us to pick, they beat us to it. The berries too, the birds got there first, on the morning we went to pick.

And yet, the little there is we continue to water, the few flowers that have not been eaten. One hundred five, soon we will no longer water, soon we will conserve water, soon if we are lucky it will rain. The pond is two maybe three feet lower, the fish may get too warm, they too are staying still, can't even catch a one, maybe it is too hot even to swim.

At dawn again today, out to water the little bit of flowers, the little bit of food. They even like cucumber. And oh no, the pretty big melon that we were watching grow, we thought it was hidden, out of sight. They found it, and now the big melon is gone. Maybe it was the racoon.

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