Deer crossing.

by Justin

The wind chill today pushed the temperature into single digits, making the earth outside hard as concrete and the streets more desolate than ever.

Whippets, by rights of centuries of breeding and manipulation, live to chase down small animals. Rabbits are the ideal quarry, but squirrels and anything of a similar size are nearly as mind breaking. My dog’s instincts fly into overdrive and the bits of his brain reserved for listening to me disintegrate whenever the opportunity to chase arises. Curiously, as Icarus is wary of anything larger than a cat, a particular animal much larger than most dogs causes a similar abandonment of reason. Deer, sighted even at a great distance, threaten to make the pup spiral into madness.

Three deer gathered this morning around a large puddle covered by a thick layer of ice. Two were chewing the dying grass, the third was sipping the dregs of unfrozen water. Only once we got within 20 feet did they do anything other than perk their ears and stare. At that point, white tails raised, the deer leapt into the woods and vanished. Deer crossing roads and grazing outside homes offers that dreamy and dangerous juxtaposition of the untamed and the too-tamed.