Ravens and Lepers

Ravens fill the Treadwell Woods with croaks, beeps, chortles, and complaints as a large family approaches. Have the big birds taken on the job of warning of the approach of the infected?  Feeling like a leper myself, I pick up Aki and move to the far side of the trail, establishing a safe space for the family to pass. 

            Given the weather, I am surprised to meet any humans here. Yesterday’s clear skies are obscured by a squall. Compact pellets of snow bounce onto the trail. I’m here for the eagles. A mated pair keep a nest in a tree overlooking the collapsed glory hole. Thanks to the noisy ravens we’ll never hear an eagle. They may also be the reason why we will never see one. 

            When we drop down on it from the woods, Sandy Beach is empty except for ravens and one self-assured belted kingfisher. It lands on a nearby wharf piling as a raven dances and sings on the beach.  Raven continues the performance from the top of another wharf piling. Assuming the posture of a petitioning lover, he boxes the compass, croaking to the north, east, west, and south. Kingfisher flies off but only as far as another piling wharf from where he listens to raven finish his atonal love song. 

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