I woke up at 4:00 am today and, feeling kinda smarmy, I arose, took a pain pill, then laid back down in the guest room, where, suddenly, the pain washed over me in a tsunami of sensation.
I couldn't read anything and I couldn't sleep, so I finally got up and let the dogs go out for their morning ablutions.
I opened the screen-door. Within the passing of only a few seconds, as the killer-dog, Mickey, burst through the opening, I saw such an incredible scene like the flashing of a slide show upon a screen.
Over our fence, in the neighbor's yard, there was a group of about eight deer. I don't know if they were young or old or bucks or does.
But it was their ritual, performed in those haunting moments between the full moon going down and the eastern sky taking on a pale hue, that struck me and is with me still. It was, I imagine, something not usually seen by the eyes of us lowly humans.
About six deer milled around tightly in a circle, and, from the center of the circle, two other deer stood up very straight upon their hind legs. Facing each other, they were boxing -- in play, I presume. Striking out with their front hooves, perfectly balanced and facing off like Frasier and Ali.
Thrilla in Manila!
I'd seen things like this in the woods before and on Animal Planet, but what was different was how the other deer, not involved in the boxing match, were mingling in so close to the ones who were.
Then, seconds later, my murderous, standard-sized Dachshund spotted this scene and charged it for all he was worth without respect to the mystical goings-on. His loud yapping spooked the small herd which suddenly abandoned its play and took off for the woods across the road.
I'll never forget that sight!