nichepoetryandprose

poetry and prose about place

Archive for the ‘exploring New Brunswick’ Category

wildlife weekend

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The rule is: if you forget the camera, you’ll see something to photograph. Yesterday, we broke the rule. On a quick trip to the camp we saw these two. The moose cow was all legs; looks like she was put together by a committee. The bear was a big one, too busy eating wild strawberries to be very worried about us. This makes the forth bear we have seen this year. And we heard the loon down on the lake. Great weekend.

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All the best!

Jane

Written by jane tims

July 16, 2018 at 7:00 am

Pileated Woodpecker excavations

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The Pileated Woodpecker (Dryocopus pileatus) is a common visitor in our yard. The size of the woodpecker and its triangular red crest are impossible to miss. The male also has a red stripe on the side of its face.

There is a big spruce tree in our grey woods where the Pileated Woodpecker loves to visit. The hole in the tree and the pile of woodchips below the hole say this woodpecker has been very busy.  The woodpeckers drill these holes to get insects.

On a drive to see the Smyth Covered Bridge near Hoyt, New Brunswick, we found a roadside tree with evidence of the Pileated Woodpecker’s industry.  The holes are almost a foot in length and deep enough to hide a hand.

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To humans, the best forests may seem to be woods with healthy trees. To provide good habitat for the Pileated Woodpecker, a forest should have lots of dead and fallen trees, to provide food and nesting sites.

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Copyright Jane Tims 2018

Written by jane tims

April 27, 2018 at 7:06 am

ice-falls in New Brunswick

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An ice-fall along highway #102 in New Brunswick

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One of the sad things about the end of winter is the demise of our ice-falls in New Brunswick. Along the roads, where there are streams intersected by road-cuts, we often have a build-up of ice as it drips from the top of the cut. Some of the ice-falls are spectacular and all are dazzlers in the sun. For more about ice-falls in my blog see here.

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From my reading, I know that ice-falls begin as ‘frazil ice’, a suspension of small ice crystals adhering to soil, rock or vegetation. As meltwater flows over the surface of the frozen ice-fall, new layers are built and a cross-section of the ice will show bands of ice. 

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In New Brunswick, some ice-falls are climbable, and some create caves under the curtain of ice. A famous New Brunswick ice-fall is the Midland Ice Caves near Norton. https://www.explorenb.ca/blog/icecaves

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one warm hand

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icicles seep between

layers of rock frozen

curtains separate

inner room from winter storm

glass barrier between blue

light and sheltered eyes

memory of water flows

along the face of the rock

one warm hand melts ice

consolation, condensation

on the inward glass

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(published as ‘one warm hand’, http://www.janetims.com, March 10, 2012)

Copyright Jane Tims 2018

Written by jane tims

April 13, 2018 at 7:00 am

signs of spring

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Here are few of the signs of spring we saw on our drive last weekend:

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a skunk running through the apple orchard …

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pussy willows …

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muddy roads …

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beer cans and other returnables, released from their cover of snow …

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and a New Brunswick can-and-bottle collector out for walk …

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Happy Spring!

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Copyright Jane Tims 2018

Written by jane tims

April 9, 2018 at 7:01 am

Pokiok Falls

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Pokiok Stream, about 2011

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On one of our family summer excursions across Canada, my parents stopped along the highway in New Brunswick to see the Pokiok Falls near Nackawick. I remember the white churn of water below me, so steep it looked like the water was falling into a pipe. In 1967 the Mactaquac Dam submerged the falls and now they are only a memory, visible on old post cards and in photo albums.

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For a fictionalized account of the changes resulting from the building of the Mactaquac Dam, read Riel Nason’s excellent coming-of-age book ‘The Town That Drowned‘ (Goose Land Editions, 2011).

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Pokiok Falls

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my mother held me at the railing

to see the Pokiok

plunge

from highway

to river

granite pipe

roiling water

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later, when the dam went in

they moved the churches

to higher ground

so the church bells

wouldn’t gurgle

when they rang

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now the river slips sideways a notch

to fill the round drowning of the falls

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water cannot fall within water

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I cried when I left

I hadn’t seen the pokioks

I said

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Copyright Jane Tims 2018

wildflowers – Bladder campion

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One of my favorite roadside flowers is the Bladder campion, Silene vulgaris (Moench) Garcke.  The flowers are white, with five deeply lobed petals. The flowers protrude from an inflated, papery calyx, greenish, purple-veined and bladder-like. This time of year, the flowers are almost past.

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I love the scientific generic name Silene, derived from the name of a Greek woodland deity. Another common name for Bladder campion is maidenstears.

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The leaves of Bladder campion are edible, used raw in a salad or cooked in a stew.

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Copyright 2017 Jane Tims

Written by jane tims

August 4, 2017 at 7:14 am

wildflowers – Canada lily

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A drive this time of year through Grand Lake Meadows, along the old Trans-Canada Highway, will show you one of our prettiest wild flowers — Lilium canadense L., the Canada lily.

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The flowers are a glimpse of orange in vast fields of greenery. The flowers are down-ward pointing, reminding me of a chandelier of light. They bloom from June through August in the moist wetlands of this part of central New Brunswick.

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As the meadow winds flip the flowers upward, you can catch a glimpse of the dark red anthers and the spotted interior of the petals.

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Copyright 2017 Jane Tims

Written by jane tims

August 2, 2017 at 4:43 pm

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