From an upcoming project ~ Raven’s Journey:
Chapter One: Quiet in the Forest
“The forest lay quiet after the rain stopped, but not silent. Ambient sounds, many barely audible and easily dismissed, filled the air. Moisture dripped from mist-shrouded maple trees pattering drop after drop into the green jungle of ferns, lichens and liverworts living on their matted branches and mossy trunks. A sodden branch on a towering spruce tree tipped under the weight of its wet load, sending earthward a shower of silvery droplets that pelted the broad leaves of the spine-covered Devil’s Club near its base, setting up a staccato rhythm of splashes upon its verdant foliage.
The drops also splashed onto the bright ruby face of a ripe salmonberry. The swollen fruit shivered and slipped from its berth onto the mat of yellow-green moss carpeting the forest’s floor. It jarred loose mosquitoes that were using the detritus and mosses as cover. Soon the droning sound of hungry females filtered through the protective foliage as they once again took to wing seeking blood from living animals to nourish their developing eggs.
Close by, a stream flowed, its murmuring waters tumbling over riffles, slipping under moss-covered logs and caressing gravel-lined banks on its journey to join the more distant cacophony of ocean wave and wind songs.
For too long, heavy mists and unrelenting rains shrouded both the forest and seashore. Even the distinctive hissing sound of Raven’s rhythmical wing beat and his guttural croaks were subdued by the sounds of the heavy rains assaulting the environment. The grayness of the storm lay depressingly heavy on Raven’s psyche. Its ever-present wetness, beading up on his beak, chaffed his nostrils which irritated him. It dripped into his eyes and onto his shaggy throat feathers. He instinctively ruffled his glossy black plumage every few minutes in a fruitless effort to dispel the maddening dampness.”…to be continued.