In Autumn of 2014 I had the pleasure of being the artist-in-residence for the Porcupine Mountains Willderness State Park in the Upper Penninsula of Michigan. One glorious day I hiked along the Little Carp River, through the lush catherdral of the autumnal forest. Near the end of my hike the trail turned and took me into an open space––a marsh. A small breeze caressed the surface of the water and skipped across the yellowed tips of grass and rush with a silky laugh. The sapphire sky filled the open bowl with light and warmth.
This luminous park of water and grass and warmth had an architect––beavers! They had clearly been at work creating their channels and pools, and somewhere their lodge, though I could not find it. The entire scene was a spectacular construction, a marvel of engineering, and it is of enormous benefit fo rthe ecosystem, soring water for dry times, and providing habitat for all manner of small animals and birds.