Friday, October 29, 2004


Ah, there have been a few sights in these weeks, months.

I could have noted this one:

An early morning meander via the heath and its pond, heading for a paper. And there in mid-air, a crow, spinning and bobbing. This way – but only a bit. That way – but only a bit. Swinging with the bursts of the breeze. Then faster, then a swivvle, a turn. Then still. All above the pond. Its wings were splayed as if for flight, but they were not flapping. Its black beak was open but was silent, not squawking. An amazing sight I wandered towards than morning – how did it do that? – why? – and then I spied the fishing line.

A mistake, slung by clowning children perhaps? Either way, slung too far; caught on the branch of the tree that overhangs the pond, and just left there. An invisible slice of wire, sharp as razor, a tight little line of death above the pond. The crow had severed its neck on it, the crow must have flown right into it, everything totally stopped in just one second. Horrible thing, I watched it for a while, suspended like a piece of lifeless plastic art in some contemporary exhibition – before heading off to scan the headlines about terrorism and football.