An Ode to the Bosque
Our breath mists as we step out of the car into the gray pre-dawn light. Burritos warm our hands and beanies our ears while we stand, still blinking the sleep from our eyes. The Chupadera mountains rise in the distance. And, of course, the cranes hunker in their pond, ice ringing their stick legs. We all await the sunrise and the coming of warmth.
Slowly the cranes begin to wake, shaking their wings, clearing their throats, and moving about. Some step on the ice but fall through, becoming ungainly bundles of feathers and long necks and startled squawks. Then, the first one takes off. It slips on the ice, looking surprisingly cartoon-like, but soon defeats gravity and takes to the sky. Others follow suit, rising in pairs, trios, and whole groups to find the day’s feeding grounds. Spectacular.
- Evelyn Byrd