Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Call of the Wild

I left work late last night - close to 6 PM. I had decided to stay later at work to do some of my own writing, email it to myself and then relax when I got home. This is so much easier to do during daylight savings time when I don;t feel like a "mole" - go to work in the dark and go home in the dark.

I was driving along Postal Road, near the Lehigh Valley Airport, when I saw this huge bird sitting on top of a light pole. I immediately put on my four-ways, pulled over to side of the road - under the light pole - and stopped. I got out of the car and looked up at him - big, beautiful and commanding. He gazed down as if to say, "You lookin' at ME?"

Mindful that I could get a head-full of bird poop, I moved back, still watching him - he had to be almost two-feet in height - one of the biggest hawks I had ever seen in the area. I've noticed that hawks love the tall light poles - a perch for them to watch for prey. There is always at least one hawk atop a light pole along Rt 33 by a nursery (garden not kiddie) - looking down into the piles of mulch and shrubs, probably scanning the area for an erstwhile vole or mouse. A sudden graceful swoop and there is one less rodent in the world.

My hawk last night must have been a tad scittery with this big old human in close proximity looking up at him (her?), because he suddenly opened a 4-foot wing span and sailed further away - to a telephone pole.

It had been a long day - a work day with the usual amount of angst. I had written what I thought was a decent scene on my work-in-progress and I was feeling rather good about the end of the day. Seeing this beautiful bird made it even better.

This morning I looked through my book of North American birds. The closest one pictured in book was an "immature red-tailed hawk." I think red-tailed hawks are unusual for the this part of the country - but I'm really not sure. And if he was "immature" I sure as heck would love to see him when he "matures" - hopefully he would not be able to pick up a fat old lady staring up at him.


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