Monday Creek

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Living in a rural area is fun. If you’re lucky to live near a creek, you’re lucky enough. Monday Creek flows through our valley; a creek where Indians congregated, settlers cooled off after a hard day’s work, and, finally, a scenic spot in my world. The horse pasture is just east of Monday Creek. It brings in the seasonal will-o-the-wisp, a heavy curtain of fog that rolls through the valley.

In the morning, you can walk out the door and see billowing clouds, deep blue skies, and a beautiful horizon. There are no skyscrapers or tall buildings blocking the view. The morning creek smells of loam and dew. A passing deer may stop for a drink, or a swallow may swoop down for a sip. The willows sway and bounce on the water’s edge, branches tipping to the ripples.

The afternoon brings shade from the water birch and other native flora that line Monday Creek. Water sparkles as the sun hits the surface. When the weather is right, you can take off your shoes and squish your toes into the cool mud. You may find a crawdad, or two, and mammoth fishworms. Sometimes you can see minnows swimming for a spot in the shallows while four-leaf clover and crown vetch grace the creekbank.

The evening creek sings to the rising moon as the night fauna becomes louder. Coyotes and deer begin their ritual of searching for food — always on the move. An owl and peregrine falcon wait patiently for the sun to disappear. It’s time to bed down, revere the whisper of the creek and the night creatures.

Each day I breathe fresh air and say hello to Mother Nature. Monday Creek flows through our farm, to the Ohio River, to the great Mississippi River, then to the sea. Monday Creek isn’t very wide — maybe 40 feet wide, in some places. It has memories of childhood swimming holes, bath time for horses, skipping stones, or just quiet time listening to the water stream. If you’re lucky to live near a creek, you’re lucky enough.

Gina McKnight is a freelance writer from Ohio, USA.