Thomas Joshua Cooper. "They are simple accessible places, familiar and ordinary." Accessible and ordinary, but still wild. Big Oak Woods, Siler's Bog and the marshy fields along Mor- gan Creek are wild because they are still firmly in the grip of enduring natural processes and changes. The seasons' familiar cycles are, of course, one natu- ral process that is easy to see. The way the simple winter shapes of trees and limbs are furred out in spring but still transparent beneath the young, small green leaves ...
the way the dead stalks of last year's grass bodies, so
striking in January, virtually disappear beneath the ram-
pant new grasses of July ... the way December's quiet
fields are boisterous in mid-summer with the buzzing
of innumerable bees and the droning of cicadas.
Young poplars begin
to shed their leaves
Other changes occur at a different pace, according
to the dictates of secondary plant succession. Most of
Mason Farm's old fields are mowed every few years
to keep them as open as they have been for the past
two centuries; left to their own devices, the fields
CAR 0 LIN A A L U M N IRE V lEW