For me, the day has not been particularly eventful, though it has been marked by an odd convergence of beastly presences— by which I mean that I keep seeing animals. First, a pair of blue jays parked themselves on the stumpy branches of the pollarded fruitless mulberry tree and kept looking in my window. That they remained utterly silent the entire time they were there only added to the oddness of the event.
When the blue jays had departed, a jackrabbit came bounding up the street. This is an extremely rare event here. In twenty some-odd years I've seen jackrabbits on this street maybe a dozen times. This particular rabbit hopped onto the edge of my front lawn and stood there for a minute, then looked directly at me looking at him from my window, and then hopped back down the street the way he'd come.
A bit later I saw one of the striped cats who has been hanging around recently. He was sitting on my back porch and staring in my back window. When he saw me looking back at him he didn't move, but returned my gaze for a while before deciding that his face needed a washing. I went about my business and when I returned to the kitchen a while later I saw that he had gone.
Finally, at dusk, I went out to sniff the air (cool and clear), and to see the waxing moon brightening high in the east (though it had been quite visible in the pale blue sky all the afternoon) and found that several acorn woodpeckers had gathered in the bare branches of the walnut tree and were squawking at one another. I assumed it was some sort of family squabble. I couldn't tell if they were looking into my windows or not.
Even the Internet offered no respite, as while perusing YouTube for a bit of distraction I came across this '80s video of Aussie Band Icehouse's "No Promises", displaying one of the strangest creatures ever seen on earth, Iva Davies' flamboyant mullet.
Now night has fallen, and when I went outside I found myself wondering what might be out there in the darkness, looking at me. Beastly.
by A.R. Ammons
I know if I find you I will have to leave the earth
and go on out
over the sea marshes and the brant in bays
and over the hills of tall hickory
and over the crater lakes and canyons
and on up through the spheres of diminishing air
past the blackset noctilucent clouds
where one wants to stop and look
way past all the light diffusions and bombardments
up farther than the loss of sight
into the unseasonal undifferentiated empty stark
And I know if I find you I will have to stay with the earth
inspecting with thin tools and ground eyes
trusting the microvilli sporangia and simplest
and praying for a nerve cell
with all the soul of my chemical reactions
and going right on down where the eye sees only traces
You are everywhere partial and entire
You are on the inside of everything and on the outside
I walk down the path down the hill where the sweetgum
has begun to ooze spring sap at the cut
and I see how the bark cracks and winds like no other bark
chasmal to my ant-soul running up and down
and if I find you I must go out deep into your
and if I find you I must stay here with the separate leaves