Ground Treasures

Ground Treasures

 Magic from the Forest Floor

Acorns

A small child sees treasure on a shining wet forest floor. A smooth oval acorn gets slipped into a pocket. And the pockets are consequently filled. One treasure after another found amongst the brown carpet of leaves and ancient shimmering rocks. Cold pink fingers and dirty nails.

Oak leaves & Acorns

I, too, search for treasure. I start to fill my pockets with acorns. They are cold, smooth with a surprisingly sharp tip. I pretend we are squirrels, or maybe chipmunks. Yes, I would like to be a chipmunk gathering acorns to hid underground, making myself a bed of oak and beech leaves, sleeping nestled in the roots of a great oak all winter long.

chipmunk song

from Chipmunk Song, illustrator Lynne Cherry

 

I often find myself walking in the woods eyes glued to the ground. Treasures. Hickory nuts. Small pieces of quartz. Turkey feathers. Porcupine quills. Occasional mica. Bits of egg shells. Owl pellets. Earthy mushrooms. Raccoon prints. Tips of branches blown down from high up in the trees, a taste of the sky.

Raccoon Evidence

And now the world gets a new canvas. A blanket of cold white snow. There will be new things to find when we venture out into the woods. Prints of coyote, squirrel, voles, deer, fox. Nut hulls left from a squirrel’s snack. Maybe otter trails by the river.

Winter River

2 Comments

  1. kathleen gilday
    January 2, 2014

    DEAREST ATALANTA,

    WHAT A SWEET OFFERING OF YOUR TIME IN THE WOODLANDS WITH YOUR CHILDREN. WARMS MY HEART ON A COLD, SNOWY EVENING.

    I THINK OF YOU OFTEN AND FONDLY. YOUR SMILE AND KIND WAYS ARE SO VERY SPECIAL.

    WISHING YOU AND YOUR FAMILY MANY JOYS AND BLESSINGS AS THE NEW YEAR OPENS, AND THROUGH THE BEAUTIFUL SEASONS TO COME!!

    LOVE AND HUGS,
    KATE

    Reply
    • atalanta
      January 2, 2014

      Thank you, sweet Kate. I have been thinking of you lately as well, with the hemlocks thick with snow. I hope we get to see each other as winter thaws out. love, atalanta

      Reply

Leave a Reply