The First of March, Afternoon (54)

On the way home from the farmer’s market, I take a detour on my bike to see how much water is in the creek. I see two men, one standing very still with a big brown dog sitting at his feet, the other wielding a camera with a large telephoto lens. I slow way down as I ride past them, not wanting to disturb his shot. Then I see the egret standing in the middle of the creek. I keep going, afraid if I stop he might decide to leave the camera’s eye. I turn around at the bridge and stop to see the egret on the way back. The photographer and his companions are gone, but there are two men watching the egret from the path on the opposite side of the creek. One is wearing a red hat. I think I get almost as much pleasure looking at them as I do the egret. It makes me feel so good to know they treasure him, too. We all stand watching for a long time. The men move off, and the egret leaves, too. I watch him fly south, weaving his way between the fan palms. I turn my head for a moment when a bicyclist comes by, and when I look back the egret has disappeared. I wonder if he’s my morning egret. The day feels like it’s come full circle.

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