Rocky was an elder squirrel.
You could see it in the silver of his tail, held high in a curl.
Bold and wise ~ you could see this in his eyes.
And a warrior, too.
His scars revealed, and a hole in one ear where light shone through.
He hung around with the other squirrels.
Closer he came, closing the distance between us.
Wild, not tame,
but curious just the same,
traversing great oak limbs and pine.
When I came out,
he descended to the lowest limb to check me out.
With a thrill, I offered him a pecan
from a neighbor’s tree across the lawn.
He accepted it with cautious grace,
sat there, ate it, enjoying the look on my face.
Whenever outside I went,
he came running lickity-split.
If he had ranged afar,
a signal of tapping two pecans brought him
racing tree-to-tree, limb-to-limb, to me.
Watermelon became a new treat,
holding a slice between his two feet,
juice running down his furry chin.
My heart filled with joy, knowing him.
One sunny day, I felt so very familiar,
Rocky sitting on the grill chomping watermelon.
He and I had shared a whole summer,
so I ventured to pet his blessed gray squirrel head.
He taught me then he had his space,
with a chitter-chatter he excitedly made his case.
For a few seasons, he remained my friend,
till sadly, his visits came to an end.
~ Lynn Korbel