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  • Dale Bowman

Time: Ramble with the Lady


When I find it is a week or more between Rambles, I know I am too busy.

Tis the season for that.

Between hunting--goose, duck, deer--and traveling to hunting spots, fishing--perch, mainly--and traveling to fishing spots, family stuff--kids performances, cutting the Christmas tree--and work--both the usual outdoors stuff and the Sun-Times' charity bowling event, Beat the Champions--I just found the days disappeared.

The brilliant sunrise over the town pond this morning snapped me back into appreciating the full sensory experience of rambling off with Lady, the family's mutt. The dawn was just something to marvel at with the reds, yellows, oranges, grays, black and shades of gray (well short of 50 shades of mis-spelled grey, hello E. L. James) over the south old clay pit.

Time pulls at my skull.

For many years, I have ended my outdoors columns in the Sun-Times, when it is an adventure or travel piece, with the tagline, ``It was time.'' I pulled it from several time references in the poetry of T. S. Eliot. He's an Anglophile and confused on formal religion, basically somebody I can't really stand. However, his poetry has such rhythm that it wormed into my brain and just sits there years later.

The most notable part when it comes to time is in the second part of ``The Waste Land,'' the ``Game of Chess'' section.

HURRY UP PLEASE ITS TIME

HURRY UP PLEASE ITS TIME

Click here for ``The Waste Land'' at the poetryfoundation.org.

Some of the time angst is probably just how fast I feel the family growing up and even myself passing milestones of life.

I find it astonishing how little activity there is among the animals this time of year.

There were no Canada geese. I think with this weather--days of 60s coming--what migrators moved in with the snowstorm last month have now gone back north. I find it surprising too that I am seeing no more rabbits, unless the predators are finally starting to thin their ranks with the vegetation dying off.

Speaking of dying off, the hedge apples on the east side of the south pit are decomposing nearly into compost.

Back on the edge of town, the grain dryers were going at the grain elevators (hello, Charles Demuth) and the only wildlife of the morning, a gray squirrel, ran off around the back side of Station Street Pub.

Soon enough, it was time to clamor up the front steps and time to to start breakfast for my wife and our kids.

Time.

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