Thursday, May 04, 2006


At home today with my youngest, whose allergies have triggered a terrible cough and wheezing. This always makes me nervous, as I feel so helpless watching his labored breathing. He is subdued when ill, which means he is more like your typical boy than his wild, war-whooping self. He is such a contrast to his brothers.

Behind our house is a small shed, a very sturdy structure built as well as our house was built. Underneath are three "denmates" whom I frequently observe coming and going uncover of darkness. They are the oddest little group, like three bachelors sharing an apartment. Out on the deck at night, when I look down, most often I see the possum as he waddles out to nose around and gather some newly fallen leaves to line his nest. He is an ugly, ugly critter...but almost sweet, he is so ugly. He is very shy and timid.

Denmate number two is a young racoon; at least I assume it is young, he is not very big. He is pretty bold and will come up and sit on the deck and watch us through the sliding glass doors like we are some zoo exhibit. He is also responsbile for attempting to get at our garbage (sometimes succeeding) and is the reason I invested in a lifetime supply of bungee cords for the trash can lids.

Lastly we have the skunk. He is squat and wide and silent. He is generous with his scent, which he seems fond of realeasing directly under the bedroom air conditioner. Silent...but deadly.

These three vastly different critters all cohabiting under one shed. It reminds me of my three critters. My oldest, the possum, quiet and retiring, slow moving and deliberate. My middle, the raccoon: cheeky, bold, clever, cute but don't cross him. And my youngest: the skunk. Though not silent, he is a study in contrasts, his mood goes from black to white in seconds. His reactions are extreme, and affect everyone around him. And yes, I'll say it...he can be a real stinker!

"FunkedUp Flowers" for Artellavisions Mojo of the Month
pen and ink and watercolor followed by digital manipulation.


bRaEn said...

Love the three " lurkers " . We just found a baby ( maybe 3 weeks old ) opossum trying to make a dash into our garage. He must've escaped mama somehow. They really ARE ugly creatures. And yet I can't imagine injuring this baby just because he has a nasty hiss and face only a mama could love. We had trapped him, and let him out last night when his mama would most likely be looking for him. I hope they were reunited. I wish there was a nice " house " nearby for them to nest in. Mine is NOT available. No rooms for rent here ! Hope your little guy feels better soon !

Bonnie Rae ( PX )

Tammy said...

Nici - I love your comparisons of your denmates with your kids. It's a cool analogy - and your words were lovely!

I LOVE your funked flowers! Very cool!! I'm getting into using Photoshop more to alter art - just learning, but it's FUN!