Two years ago I had my land logged. Choice trees were removed for sale to a mill and firewood to warm the house. It was a ragged, scarring operation for the land. My 6+ acres undulate like a folded blanket; deep ravines and rocky valleys lead to the ultimate rock pile in the back of the property – the ledges below the Wapack Trail.
Alice and I often wander back there to watch the land recover. After moist sunny days and cold nights, the forest is reseeding itself.
The road leading off the eastern corner of the house has finally dried from the swamp it was a month ago.
Looking back, the house is almost hidden behind the curtain of saplings. The first ‘step’ of a clearing has become a virtual meadow of long thick grass.
Seedlings along the next climb up foretold of mighty oaks if left to grow. The ledges are now cloaked in vegetation, softening their granite countenances.
This was interesting in color but down-right creepy in black & white.
Stubborn stumps cling to the thin soil; their roots curling deep around the rocks, their faces aging to silver in the unfamiliar light.
Decay feeds new life, stark white birch feed soft new baby white pines.
Here we discovered a Pileated Woodpecker’s café. It wasn’t patronized recently, there were no fresh wood chips and the spiders had moved in to shelter from the elements.
We wandered back along the old road to the front yard where low bush blueberries are flourishing.
It was messy and sad but letting the light into this rocky corner has brought glorious regrowth. Perhaps I should take that lesson to heart…