“My butt’s already sore.” Mother Goose


Hi everyone,

Mother Goose is on the nest and Father stays close by in the water. Now we wait. We already have five other couples paddling around the lake showing off their broods and our gal is just getting started. Maybe as she sits there day after day for the next four weeks, watching all those youngsters growing bigger and stronger, she’ll wish she hadn’t put this off for so long. Some geese just cannot make up their minds.

You’d think that Father Goose himself laid those eggs and was sitting on that thin nest with nothing but a few twigs and his wife’s breast feathers between him and that rocky ledge. His nerves are already on edge. While I was watching yesterday from a few feet away a couple and their four goslings were out for a swim at the far end of the lake. The gander raised his head, shook it in the air, and released a loud series of gobbles aimed in our general direction. Whereupon Father Goose yelled back with agitated gusto, looking for all the world as if he were sick and tired of that braggart carrying on about his brilliant little fuzz-ball children.

He then extended his neck an inch above the water, opened his beak, and rushed muttering to his mate as though he had just taken care of that bore once and for all and she could rest easy with him on the job. Something tells me that we’ll have to send Father to anger management or slip him some Xanax before he gets these four eggs hatched.

The wait begins

BULLETIN: Yesterday I examined the abandoned nest and found one egg still in it. No bits of shells to indicate that the second gosling hatched so maybe a predator got it. Mama G had moved her nest back a few inches from the waters edge. Maybe she feard that a turtle would reach up out of the water and snatch her eggs. All we can do is wait and hope that one of these evenings we’ll see the parents swimming on Goose Lake with their one offspring paddling along between them.

Hi everyone,

Empty Nest
David L. Harrison

Unmade bed at water’s edge
abandoned in the press of duty,
disarray of feathers ruffling
among the sticks and mud.

When coaxed in dark of night
to step off the ledge and swim,
what fate befell the goslings?

Safely tucked along the shore
in some convenient thicket?

Turtles maintain their patrol.
Hope for success begins.

More from Mother Goose


Hi everyone,

This morning, Mama G was in a better mood. She even stood up to greet me.

“Good morning!” I called with more cheerfulness than I felt. “And how are our eggs today?”

She looked at me for a long moment before replying. “Our eggs are just peachy, dear,” she said.

“You sound better,” I said, taking my seat four steps up.

“Sorry about the hissy fit,” she said. “Truth is I had just discovered my first gray feather.”

I decided that silence was the wisest response.

“After sitting out in the rain I caught a big honking cold, and to top it off my darling mate got to talking to that beaver across the lake. Again. Forgot the time. He says. So I was sniffing and sneezing and the eggs hurt and I had a migrate headache . . .”

“You mean migraine?”

“Dear, a goose doesn’t migraine. A goose migrates. Anyway, I was tired and cranky and figured what was good for the goose should be good for the gander, as we geese like to say.”

“Mama G,” I said. “I Googled about this. The male Canadian goose doesn’t sit on the nest. It’s your job. He’s supposed to hang around and be ready to protect you.”

“Aha!” she snorted. “Protect me from what? Beavers?”

“Okay, look at the bright side. You’ve been out here for five days already. You only have another twenty, twenty-five tops!”

“I can do the math,” she said. “I didn’t exactly flunk flight school.”

“Uh . . .”

“But I’m better now. I’ve been making up stories and telling them to my eggs. My goslings will pop out loving my stories!”

“Fantastic!” I said. “Do you have a name for your stories?”

“Really?” she said. “Really?”

“Not thinking,” I mumbled.

“Don’t you have work you need to be doing?” she suggested.

All in all I thought it went well.

This morning with Mother Goose


Hi everyone,

Well! What can I say? Mother G had her tail feathers in a knot this morning. I hadn’t reached the middle step before her warning hiss practically gave me a face peel.

“Hey, it’s only me,” I called. “What’s with the chip on your wing?”

“What’s it to you?” she honked.

“Because I care about you,” I said.

“That’s the oldest line in the world,” she said, bobbing her head in agreement with herself. “I’ll never fall for that one again.”

“You mean . . . “

“Yep. Until he got his way with me.”

“And made you preggers?”


“But isn’t that what sometimes happens when girl geese grow up and get married?”

“Romeo’s idea of a date was to fly around the lake a couple of times,” she said. “Then stick our heads under water and eat weeds.”

“May I at least sit down?” I asked.

“It’s your yard,” she muttered. “I’m just living in it.”

“Mother G, why are you so upset? It’s a beautiful, sunny day!”

“Where were you last night during the storm?” she snapped with what I took to be sarcasm. “Did you enjoy all that rain pounding your back? Were you outside sitting on a rock when the hail stung like bumblebees? Or were you inside snuggled on your cozy little sofa with a cozy little drinky-poo in your cozy little hand? Don’t even bother to answer.”

Ignoring her inappropriate uses of “cozy,” I changed the subject. “Haven’t seen your mate today,” I said.

“Haven’t seen your mate today!” she mimicked. “Well let me tell you something, buster. I haven’t seen that louse either! He’s only about five hours late to take his turn on this lumpy throne of pain! I need a break!”

“Oh, look at the time,” I said. “I really must be getting back to work.”

“You just do that,” she glared. “Next time try to be useful. Bring me a hot water bottle or some goose rash ointment. This nest is murder on your underparts.”

I guess one shouldn’t be judgmental until you’ve waddled a mile in the other guys webs. Still, I didn’t chalk this up as a good morning for Mother Goose.