Thursday, April 28, 2016


Garry Tucker, USFWS, "Alligator
Snapping Turtle
," 2004

By the time I arrived, it was trundling down
steep banks through dewberry and rain lily
towards the river, leaving a belly-flattened,
matted tangle behind a carapace knobbled
by osteoderms tic-tac-toeing three rows, its
bony ridges dragging algae and nettles. We
hung back, not wanting to see whether the
monster could pick up speed to snap all our
fingers right off, half-hoping we could touch
it before it sunk into the bottom mud. In its
wake, a cardinal, as bright an incendiary red
as the snapper was dulled camo gray-green.

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