Saturday, December 8, 2012

The Guardian - Strophe: Encounter

She moves in circles, round and round, beside the road. The guardian is not coiling, not preparing to strike, just circling. Is she injured by a passing car? Is she warming up, absorbing heat from the pavement? Is she preparing to give birth? What business is she about on this mountaintop in northeast Alabama? I stop the car but don’t get out. I don’t want to meet the Guardian. I am not motivated to uncurl the scaly body and take an accurate measurement of the guardian’s length. I am enough of a woodsman to have a healthy respect for the power of a mature timber rattlesnake. The snake inspires fear in the minds, but even more so in the emotions, of those who encounter her. Read the full story at

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