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A fleeting moment and random five.

This morning my favorite Blue Ridge Gal reminded me that over at Nancy’s Rural Journal it’s time for a random five post and I’ve been thinking about the WordPress weekly photo challenge which is “fleeting”.

So I give you three dead Cedar Waxwings and say to you, “Life is fleeting. One minute you’re flying along and the next you hit a great, big window.”

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The huge wall of double story windows have claimed their fair share of birds over the years…including a Canada goose who broke the glass. I do feel really bad about this though, but I guess it’s all fair. I mean, the poor little bodies do provide food for the other creatures and, in the wild, not much goes to waste.

The random things I’d like to tell you are:

1. I love the work of Robert Bateman. Love it, love it to pieces. Each time I find a dead bird I want to freeze it like he does and take it out frozen, pose it and use it as a model for painting. He talks about the sad little creatures which, after seven or so thaws and freezes, really do have to be discarded. Guess I’d learn to work really fast.

2. I only heard a single thud against the window and I guess the whole little flock flew into it at almost the same time. When little tragedies happen I go into complete shock and disbelief each time. That sort of unacceptance even though I know in my heart it’s the situation. Wish I had a time machine. True enough.

3. I held the birds in turn, feeling their warmth, feeling their softness. I felt all teary. Couldn’t put them down. They are so unbelievable soft and real and felt so…alive. I always have this need to remember, to feel, to take in everything, not to leave out any sensory detail. Is that my artistic soul? Or is it what everyone does? Couldn’t stop photographing them. Is that morbid?

4. I questioned whether or not I should have the little flock stuffed. I’ve had a pheasant, a seagull and a kamikaze quail, who ran into my car wheel, stuffed. But then I remembered the incredible hassle of trying to get a permit for the gull – a migratory bird – to have him stuffed, and also remembered that I don’t have electricity at the cabin and cannot freeze their little bodies and so gave up on that idea. It was high time for me to reach out to Utility Saving Expert to see if the area could get any electricity.

5. I walked around the cabin trying to find the perfect place to bury them. The real story is I couldn’t bring myself to put three such exquisite creatures into the ground. If you must know, I still have my late aunt’s ashes in my home. My grandmother kept grandfather’s ashes in her china cabinet until her death, and then I interned them both in the family crypt in Prague. I hate having them there. I wish I had them here with me. For the past several years I’ve said I must take Aunt Vera to the alpines and sprinkle her ashes there, but having her here gives me some strange comfort and, even though I hike into alpines each September, I’ve never brought her ashes with me. Maybe this year.

Whew, this is what comes from taking photos.

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