I have a puppy named Pebble.
Every morning Edge or I take her and our dog Nobee for a walk in the woods that surround the farm.
Nobee sprints between trees, jumps over dips and logs, stopping only to lay in one of the pools along the trail and drink for a moment.
Pebble runs after Nobee, but waits for me if we start to lose sight of each other. She looks back with her ears perked and wags her tail.
I walk slowly and breathe in the mud, the wet bark of logged trees, the sweet clover and wild grasses. The dogs bring me into the forest and I discover something new each time.
like the plump green ovals of new growth
the neon chlorophyll still streaking through an old leaf
a pearl of water balancing on the tip of a grass blade
a honeybee pollinating buttercups
and at the end of our walk, as we pass from forest to field, a bright red dot beneath the grass catches my eyes. As I lean down, more come into focus, and I fill up on the sweetest taste of early summer:
Pebble sniffs them in my hand, licks at one, and decides to go for the chicken poop in the field instead. We both have our favorites, and though I keep watch and call her back to me, I cannot leave the strawberries until my fingers stain pink.