Thursday, September 20, 2012

The Importance Of Feathers

A barn owl named either Rocket or Romeo, this picture cropped from Lucy's original.

Lucy writes: "They're just mature birds now, but only weigh about 9 oz - the birds are weighed meticulously and their weight logged in metric and imperial. 'Try to find his head,' said Paul 'it's no bigger than a golf ball.' We ruffled among the silky soft feathers of the head which yielded endlessly like soft cloud, somewhere deep inside there was the tiny skull, but it was quite elusive."

Lucy is a poet and blogger who lives with Tom and Molly (a lovely happy dog) near a town in Brittany, in France. Lucy and Tom are British expatriates. Lucy loves working with her camera as much or more than she likes to write. Her pictures are usually very high quality. She does not manipulate them as far as I know, though she may crop some of them a little. Recently she and Tom and Molly visited Fauconnerie Bretagne, a falconry in the French countryside. There were raptors, including owls, trained and in training. You can see the entire story, a wonderful one at Box Elder.

The Importance Of Feathers

Owl has a bird brain
inside a bird skull with eyes
that stare straight ahead.
Owl has her feathers
all smoothed and shapely, designs
that cry predation
to the small creatures
who scuttle in the dim time
after the sun sets.
If you remove all
the feathers you will not see
owl at all but see
a tiny bird skull
atop a scrawny body
all bones, beak and claws.

‎September ‎20, ‎2012 8:08 PM


  1. Thanks so much, Christopher, for both the link and the poem and your kind words! I love it when something I do makes an impression on others here.

    I do crop, and use a simple editing tool to brighten up, sharpen up contrasts and take off a bit of colour cast sometimes, but sophisticated photo editing is beyond me, which makes life simpler anyway! The pictures of the birds in flight were mostly blurry - my old camera which was more rudimentary in many ways was a bit quicker on the draw than the one I currently use and would have made a better job of it - but I guess that gives a sense of how quick and how other the birds were...

    Again, thanks for a lovely response, which serves to heighten my own.

    1. You have been high on my list of excellence for quite awhile now, Lucy.



The chicken crossed the road. That's poultry in motion.

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