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Affordable Housing

2011 March 31
by prgiff

I’m sitting in a patch of sunlight, watching a war from my window in the garden room. It must have begun in the middle of the night because I awakened briefly to the cries of outrage coming from the pond. “It’s Spring,” I whispered to Jim.
And it is. No matter that the thermometer ihas trouble creeping into the fifties; no matter that another snowstorm is forecast for Friday night. There are pansies at my front door and on the patio. Daffodils are up, and I’d like to say tulips, but the deer feasted on them the other night and I have only dim hopes that they’ll bloom next month.
But the war.
Every year it’s the same. Days before April, there’s a vast scramble for housing accommodations. Our resident pair of geese must fight off newcomers who feel that our pond might be a worthy place to raise their young.
A pair lands in the center of the pond. And once he notices, our male skims across the water at a frightening speed. He stops short just before he slams into the intruder. There’s a great flapping of wings, a dust up of feathers, and both rise up into the air.
They retreat then, to think things over. Our female, smoothing down her beige breast, stops to take a few nips at the green grass. The other female perches at the far end of the pond, wondering, I guess, where they’ll go next.
She and her mate are tired of the battle. They see that our male has great determination. And so after about twelve hours, they circle the pond and take off, maybe to a neighboring pond.
Our goose looks so proud of himself, so delighted with his power. He and his lady march up to the window. Certainly they deserve a midmorning breakfast. I run to pour it outside in a golden stream.
And maybe things will be quiet enough for me to finish my writing goal of two pages now.

2 Responses leave one →
  1. Josie Jackman permalink
    April 1, 2011

    Hello Patricia,

    I just wanted you to know how much I loved reading your The Kids of the Polk Street School series. I’m 32 years old and read the series when I was younger in the ’80s. I was just going through some of my old stuff, which is boxed up and came across the books. I immediately felt warm inside thinking of the joy I had when I would go to the bookstore and get a new book in the series and how much I would enjoy reading it. I got the book say cheese on a summer day when I was young and it brings me back, when I look at the cover, to the innocent childhood summer I had and enjoyed so much. I also organized a candy corn contest for my daughter’s 1st grade class. Something about this series really stands out to me…I think how you captured the characters. I think this series developed me into lifelong reader even though I always wished and often thought after reading an adult book, I could have the same enthusiasm for the book and characters as I did in your series. Not surprisingly, I just reread one and still enjoyed the innocent fun in it. And it feels like I’m saying hello to lost friends. I noticed no one has created a page for the series on facebook, so I created one,under The Kids of the Polk Street School Book series using the orginal covers that I adore so much!

    Thank you for writing such great books. Josie

  2. Patti permalink
    April 11, 2011

    Hi Mimi!
    I didn’t know that! Does that usually happen every spring? I think I might know where the geese went, too. Near my house, there’s a pond called Butkus Pond, and there’s 2 geese there. Do you think that those could be the warring geese that were at your house? Have fun in South Carolina!
    Love,
    Patti

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