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December 9. 2008

One of several baby red-tails in Palemale & Lola's territory. These little stinkers are tolerated by our gracious couple but every now and then they are reminded not to get too comfortable.

I am reluctant to offer any calendars or books in time for Christmas this year. The mad rush to buy and the garbage generated from this frenzy is horrendous and I really do not want to be part of that. Please enjoy the daily posts and admire the animals in your own neighborhoods--they do not celebrate and generate the unnecessary waste like we do and I'm sure the Earth love them all the better.

All images were photographed on Thursday December 4, 2008.

When an evergreen is swaying and the wind is strong it is not difficult to understand what is happening. But who is it that possess the eye and mind to see and know if every sway of that evergreen corresponds accurately with every push and twist of the rushing wind. I certainly do not have that eye or mind, but I do question the sway of that evergreen. What if the swaying of the tree had nothing to do with the wild escapades of the wind?
I believe the tree hardly acknowledged that strong wind as much as it did the joy of knowing who was going to spend the night in the comfort of its upper limbs. I am sure that long before Palemale glided into his night roost the tree began to dance and delight.
That is what I saw when I stood by and peered through my hood to enjoy the last few moments of a splendid day. The wind, needless to say, was not innocent of the delight experienced that late evening for it was he which carried my friend gently into the bosom of that happy tree. Though I am burdened by the trifling existence of my material world, I have habitually reached pitifully into theirs hoping to pluck a morsel of that beauty they possess.
And if all it takes is for me to stand like a fool on the ground and watch the dark outline of a happy evergreen sway delightfully with or without the energy of the wind, then that is a small price for the beauty I feel enveloping my soul knowing that the trees, and the animals and the entire Universe is conducting a divine business which I will forever be reaching up for, regardless of the burdens which wickedly draw me back down to my own futile existence.

Thanks for all the letters about the photos in National Geographic Magazine, December 2008. Please note that the copies of the magazine which are sent to subscribers is quite different than those on the newsstands. The subscription issue contains four pages of photographs but the newsstand version only has one page.