And Then There Were Five


July 29, 2020. We lost two ducklings. Yesterday, there were seven. Today, just five.

I know it’s silly to personalize it that way. This is wildlife, and they succumb to the wildness of nature. Nature = natural! But still, I still feel sad. This duck family swims by our dock several times a day, and I hate to see it get smaller.

I wonder, did the pike get them or the eagles? Who’s the culprit! Show your face!! Never mind that I like to eat pike. Never mind that I love to watch eagles sore along the shoreline. Today, I’m mad at them both for reminding me that nature can seem cruel.

Ducks are so common and yet so entertaining. I mentally compare them to their more mysterious cousin, the loon. Loons get your attention with their haunting wail, but they never get too close. Ducks get close. They visit often, babies trailing behind. I love it when the little guys skitter across the surface, leaving tiny wakes. A skittering duckling is one of the most amusing sights! And a quacking duck is one of the most comforting sounds.

A loon wail makes you wonder but a duck quack makes you smile. Today, I’m smiling. Yes, there are only five now. But at least there are five! I resolve again to notice the good instead of the bad — to be grateful for what remains, instead of what is lost.

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