As I sit under the stunted honey locust tree, bleeding from one thousand puncture wounds from the tree's fortress (huge thorns), it hits me between the eyes why Bob Wills made all those strange noises. Bob and the Texas Playboys grew up near here and had been exposed to the circle of fifths scales of sounds here. The Great Plains at dawn in the spring is one of the most diverse and rich audio spectacles in the world.
Nothing starts off a spring morning turkey hunting like the thrilling melody of a group of coyotes. I hope it is with joy that they howl, because it sure seems like they are enjoying themselves. Then you get the wonderful response from a tree full of Rio turkey gobblers heckling the yotes back. It is very remincent of the French guards taunting the English swine in Monty Python's Search for the Holy Grail movie. It's the yin and yang of life played out in real time, with the volume fitting a Neil Young and Crazy Horse concert.
Soon these two merge together into one drunken sounding gobble howl! What could be better. My attention is diverted to the caster bean looking bean pods that are rattling in the ever present wind. Surely a Comanche war party on pre-attack night had the same rattle and hum. A Bewick's Wren and Western Meadowlark add their opinions.
In the predawn light I hear the dry and brittle leaves crunching and see a coyote skulking by. He obviously has Easter turkey on his mind. But so do I. I relocate to get closer to the gobbling and sit down in the largest and thickest sandbur patch in the panhandle! Yip yeow under my breath. The leaves rustle again, and I expect Ol' Wiley Coyote is making another move. Instead it's a prehistoric looking armadillo almost blindly rooting his way toward me. I am certain I am doomed by the only known leprosy carrier in North America. Every third step the "dillo" is greeted by the startled rattle of a fleeing grasshopper.
After some time, the cornucopia of sound gradually tails off, leaving the predominate sound of the popping and clacking of the pumperjacks metronomic rhythm and the eighteen wheelers hitting the rumble strips several miles south on the interstate. I am reminded that my time is running out, and I, too, will soon be On The Road again. The swoosh of a Prairie Falcon in a stoop brings me back to the project at hand. The sweetest sound of all begins as a Bob White Quail announces he has retuned to the Comancheria. And the wind begins to HOWL.
Call your friendly bought and paid for politician and demand that they don't sell your public lands. Please call today.