In the hour after sunset, the water is flat, mirroring trees around the shoreline of the cove.
Each evening the large bird appeared, a gray heron with neck proudly arched,
walking on bright orange stalk-like legs. Wary of danger, with hesitant steps, he
gained ground to the tip of a sandbar stretching from the water's edge.
Standing tall, he became still as stone. Keen eyes scanned the shallow water for
minnows swimming close to its surface. Lightning-quick dips of his beak caught
sleek, silver rewards that were hungrily gulped down. The fisher resumed his
watch. Food was plentiful ... a peaceful evening to feed.
Crack! Crack! Reports of a twenty-two rifle resounded throughout the quiet.
Among rustling leaves and twigs, footsteps faded deeper into the cover of trees.
Twilight waned. Shadows spread their dusky fingers 'cross the still water. On the
sand bar, the gray heron remained. There was left but a crumpled body, strewn
feathers and sand covered eyes dulled in death.
Night's darkness settled over the cove.
GIFT OF THE GODS
Mother Nature arose at dawn
while donning her morning finery -
a first hint of fire on horizon's edge.
Then her glory of color broke the skyline of earth
melding into such great a profusion -
hues climbing wispery shreds of cloud
washing over quiet sweetness of water.
Fire softened to rose kissed shades
awing the eye... reaching deep in the soul -
to gaze on this magnificent display.
As the dawn breaks to day
in Nature's endless procession -
so this day... as will life
rise to shine yet again.