The bayou behind my house flooded in the spring.
There's a short little bank at the edge of the water. The rains brought the water up to the bank, then over, then up. There is an elevation from the bayou to my house. Actually, it's a short hill, that whole area. In late spring, rains came and came and came. The water came up and up and up, all the way to the deck. It killed my heavily laden fig trees, both of them. It killed my beautiful St. Augustine grass. It drowned my tomato plants, all ten of them. When the waters finally receded, all that remained of my tomato plants were dried stems.
But the most sickening was the loss of my fig trees. I would tell myself that I didn't lose my house like other people did. Sure, I was grateful, but, still, I was so sad to lose those two trees that I had nurtured for six years and more, especially now that they were loaded with their first full crops.
The biggest problem with having fig trees on land that borders a bayou is that beavers who live downstream LOVE fig wood. Whether it is for eating or using to build their lodges I don't know. I do know that those beavers and I had fierce battles for every limb. Of course, when I first put in that tree, I added a little fence around its trunk. However, a problem developed that I could not anticipate: the tree grew large enough to hang its limb over the fence. So, I added another line of defense--several times, ending with four distinct fences.
Finally, I hired someone to build a fence encircling the trees and far enough from them to allow growth that would surely protect the limbs and branches for a distant future.
Didn't matter. The beavers didn't get the tree. Floods did. And my heart.
Books on my very ambitious TBR list (*denotes read)
- *Reading Magic: Why Reading Aloud to our Children Will Change Their Lives Forever by Mem Fox
- The Odd Women by George Gissing
- The Zen of Fish by Trevor Corson
- How to Get Your Child to Love Reading by Esme Raji Codell
- The Cod Tale by Mark Kurlansky
- In This House of Brede by Rumer Godden
- *Joan of Arc by Mark Twain
- Dag Hammarskjold by Elizabeth Rider Montgomery
- The Wisdom in the Hebrew Alphabet by Rabbi Michael L. Munk
- Children of Strangers by Lyle Saxon
- Spiritual Writings by Flannery O'Connor
- Nightmares and Visions: Flannery O'Connor and the Catholic Grotesque by Gilbert H. Muller
- The Violent Bear It Away by Flannery O'Connor
- Flannery O'Connor's South by Robert Coles
- Wise Blood by Flannery O'Connor
- Sylvanus Now by Donna Morrissey
- *Vincent de Paul by Margaret Ann Hubbard
- Reading Lolita in Tehran by Azar Nafisi
- A Briefer History of Time by Stephen Hawking
- The Library at Night by Alberto Manguel
- Readicide by Kelly Gallagher
- *Ruined by Paula Morris
- Say You're Not One of Them by Uwem Akpan
- Wandering Star by J.M.G. Le Clezio
- Silence by Shusaku Endo
- *The Assault by Harry Mulisch
- Kari's Saga by Robert Jansson
- *The German Mujahid by Boualem Sansal
- Western Skies by Joseph Conrad
- *The Giver by Lois Lowery
- *Imperium by Ryszard Kapuscinski