Plumage

I too stood on the rim of that pond at Gainesville with the painted duck to admire his jeweled wattles, red feet, and bright green back beside the hotel parking lot he uses for handouts while he preens. I stood deaf to the tree frog, bullfrog, and muskrat and blind to waterlily, buttercup; without checking for adder, fish, or snail; without noting mosquito larvae or turtle, inchworm, or mayfly. Only a heron or kingfisher's flight can turn the tourist's shallow eye.

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