Dark wings at dusk

While I realize this photo is not of the highest quality, I nonetheless wanted to share it with you because it holds a certain fascination for me.

Taken many weeks ago, I contemplated this image’s fate many times since then.

Finally, I decided to post it.

I stood at the lake’s shore one evening as the sun climbed down its celestial ladder toward the horizon.  When the sky fell dark and the land turned to shadow, even as the last vestiges of light struggled to show at land’s end, I stood quietly and absorbed the moment.

That’s when a male great-tailed grackle (Quiscalus mexicanus) flitted by me and landed on an old concrete block mostly buried near the water.  I slowly turned and faced the creature, its feathers painted with ink so black as to be bright in the growing night.

As I watched it, it watched me.  We stood no more than a yard (a meter) apart.

Neither of us moved, and neither of us seemed all that concerned with the other.  At least not fearful, I should say.

I slowly raised the camera, pointed as best I could in the absence of light, and pressed the button.

Even though the flash marked an unexpected brightness in an otherwise black scene, he still didn’t move.

So we stood and watched each other, one a clumsy ape wielding technology as though it meant something, and the other a free spirit of winged beauty.


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