A delightful morning to be hiking with the dogs to Lawson's Fork... except that half way there I remembered hearing two four-wheelers yesterday afternoon, and my husband saying, "They never came back - I bet they are going to camp out down by the river." Hmm... In case that guess was correct, for their privacy and mine I decided not to hike that far.
It was a beautiful day no matter where we went. The stiff, dry breeze along the pipeline felt cool and kept the morning bugs away while I picked out birdsong: yellow-billed cuckoo, indigo bunting, wood thrush, brown thrasher, and in the distance the repeated screams of a red-tailed hawk. I rambled around inspecting blooms: Queen Ann's lace, butterfly weed, meadow beauty, white yarrow, and scattered here and there, the remaining lance-leaf coreopsis. All of these grow in full sunshine. I wanted to draw something in the shade
At the top of the hill I noticed a splash of school-bus-yellow in the fallen needles of the piney woods. It was a mushroom with a white stem rising from the earth, still wearing a cap of pine needles. The breeze was strong here, the dogs exhausted from running, so I sat to draw the mushroom. Daisy and Duke collapsed nearby. Duke put his head down and immediately went to sleep. Daisy put her face into the wind and half-closed her eyes, guarding me like I was her sheep.
I drew slowly for over an hour, so that by the time I packed up, the mushroom had grown a bit, and its pine needle hat had shifted, separated, and begun to slide off.