Thursday, August 19, 2010

Vultures on the Barn

Turkey vultures can have a wingspan up to six feet.
Their wings usually appear two-toned from below.
One of the cats made a staccato sound on a hot day when I had all the window blinds closed.  Not understanding the predator's code, I looked around.  With their butts in the air, both Cole and Mango were straining to look under the living room blind.

I peered between their alert ears expecting to see a brown towhee on the windowsill or one of the spotted fawns draining the birdbath again.  Nothing moving in the backyard.  When I flipped open a blind slat, I startled a turkey vulture (Cathartes aura) on the garage roof directly outside the window.  As it dropped behind the roof line, I caught a brief glimpse of something hanging from its beak, round with a stem hanging down.  A leaf?  Or perhaps a mouse.  That explained the cats' complaint at seeing a scavenger steal their snack.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

The Irony of Nature Writing

We experience nature outside.

We write inside.

In the presence of nature, we dwell in our senses.

Writing is about thinking.