Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Human Sacrifices

Driving up to the cemetery the other day my husband and I noticed something up in one of the electricity poles near the road. We stopped to look more closely. It looked like some kind of mammal but since we were not close enough to clearly see just what it was we got out the binoculars. My heart sank as I peered through the lenses and recognized the body of a Red Tail Hawk hanging upside down.

It looked as if the weight of the bird's body was being supported by its left leg. It also looked as if that leg had become trapped between the two wires leading from the insulator cap to the thicker electrical line. We suspected that the bird had somehow become tangled in the line and then electrocuted. Since there was nothing we could do at that point we continued on our way.

Yesterday, driving to the cemetery again, we noticed that the bird was no longer on the pole. It looked like the body was now lying on the ground. We again stopped but this time got out of the truck and climbed through the barbed wire fence to see if this was true. It was. The body lay on its back with the left wing spread over it. I reached down and grasped one of the large feathers and lifted the wing up to uncover the rest of the bird. I almost gasped at the sight of him. He was beautiful and looked asleep.

The body feathers were perfect and a sort of creamy white in color. He had been hanging by the left leg and the foot, below where the feathers and muscle started, was missing. There was a burn mark at the end of what remained of the leg. On the right leg, up where the meat is on a fried chicken leg, there was another large burn mark. The bird had definitely been electrocuted to death. My husband and I discussed burying the body but decided to leave it where it lay for the coyotes.

And speaking of coyotes, my husband does a lot of shopping at Cabela's (World's Foremost Outfitters) and also receives their catalog. Being on Cabela's list has also put him on the list of other outfitters and we receive many catalogs. Yesterday we got a catalog from a company called J. L. Powell (The sporting life). Powell sells high end clothing, hats, boots and other manly accessories. It is a very handsome catalog and I enjoyed flipping through it until I got to page eleven and found this, which is, as they say in the copy, "guaranteed to prompt conversation whenever it appears."

I will never buy a damn thing from these people.

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