Friday, July 22, 2011

Life with a Chinese box turtle

We got Felix when my son was 5.  Felix looks pretty much the same twenty years later.  Chinese box turtles live a long time.   A Long Time.  Usually pets don*t outlive their owners.  This one may.  Those who think  turtles have no personality are wrong.  I admit to being partial to box turtles.  When I was young, I had a box turtle.  I kept Henrietta in a tank in the living room.  Her favorite food was strawberries.  She loved any group of people who gathered there, came out of her house, dug into the rocks next to the glass.   Henrietta only returned to her house when people left.

He wakes up
Any time of the day or night,
Maybe climbs into
The water dish
For a bath and drink.
Maybe he decides it is time
For blueberries,
Perhaps Mighty Dog turkey.
At 3 in the morning
No one is awake.
He throws a turtle temper tantrum,
Picks up the ceramic plate
In his mouth,
Slams it against the glass.
It used to hold blueberries.
He wants blueberries
3 in the morning
Blueberries immediately
He tells us
Twenty years into this
We speak Chinese box turtle


  1. Cute...I have a 70lb Sulcata Tortoise. He roams my yard, even coming inside and pooping sometimes!!! He will definitely outlive me.

  2. Thanks Shanda!
    I understand there*s a woman in CA who has a backyard full of Chinese box turtles. She glues metal stars to their backs so she can find them with a metal detector...

  3. Never had a box turtle, but i think all features have personality...