This week I found a hawk feather lying in the grass. There is a hawk that’s been visiting our neighbourhood. A red-tailed hawk. More than one, but one in particular who is extremely loud, and this is the second summer it’s been around. We can hear it screeching for long periods of time. Sometimes from a nearby tree, sometimes from the sky. The other day we heard a lengthy battle in our pine tree between our hawk and a blue jay who we know is nesting there.
I found this hawk feather lying in my neighbour’s lawn and took it home. I hope they don’t mind. I really like it.
Ambushed in yonder cloud of white,
Far-glittering from its azure height,
He shrouds his swiftness and his might!
But oft across the echoing sky,
Long-drawn, though uttered suddenly,
We hear his strange, shrill, bodeful cry.
Winged robber! in his vaporous tower
Secure in craft, as strong in power,
Coolly he bides the fated hour,
When thro’ cloud-rifts of shadowy rise,
Earthward are bent his ruthless eyes,
Where, blind to doom, the quarry lies!
And from dense cloud to noontide glow,
(His fiery gaze still fixed below),
He sails on pinions proud and slow!
Till, like a fierce, embodied ray,
He hurtles down the dazzling day,—
A death-flash on his startled prey;
And where but now a nest was found,Paul Hamilton Hayne
Voiceful, beside its grassy mound.
A few brown feathers strew the ground!
Stationery in the photo
P.S. My watercolour isn’t very good of course, but I show it as an example of a mindful practice, regardless of the result.
P.P.S. This is a photo of our screeching hawk that I took last summer: