I don’t know why this came into my head this morning, but it did so I thought I might share it with you.
Years ago I was caravanning through Yellowstone with a Pro photographer when we came upon this coyote mousing a field.
I stopped, which caused the Pro to turn around to see what I had stopped for. They saw the coyote and said something to the effect of “I guess a coyote might make an OK calendar photo" Upon hearing that, the only thing that popped into my head was “What?” Needless to say I was a bit miffed by that, but that statement was a bit of a turning point in my growth as a nature photographer.
It made me realize that I never want to do this solely for money or let money, fame or any of that other crap influence my appreciation of nature or how I try and portray it. A coyote is a coyote and should be appreciated for what it is. It’s not a commodity whose only worth is what it can bring to my pocket.
To further reinforce that fact, I’ve decided that any and all profits from print sales on my website through the end of Labor Day will go straight to the Sarvey Wildlife Care Center in Arlington Washington. I love the fact that this place rehabilitates all animals brought into their care, regardless of what it is. Sure they rehabilitate “cool” animals like weasels, owls and what-not, but what I really love about them is they also rehabilitate more common animals like mallard ducks, skunks and yes, even coyotes. All wildlife deserves a second chance, these folks give it to them.
Cody, our dog of 15+ years. We love him dearly and already miss him more than words can describe.
Rest in peace buddy.
There is sorrow enough in the natural way
From men and women to fill our day;
And when we are certain of sorrow in store,
Why do we always arrange for more?
Brothers and Sisters, I bid you beware
Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.
Buy a pup and your money will buy
Love unflinching that cannot lie--
Perfect passion and worship fed
By a kick in the ribs or a pat on the head.
Nevertheless it is hardly fair
To risk your heart for a dog to tear.
When the fourteen years which Nature permits
Are closing in asthma, or tumour, or fits,
And the vet's unspoken prescription runs
To lethal chambers or loaded guns,
Then you will find--it's your own affair--
But...you've given your heart for a dog to tear.
When the body that lived at your single will,
With its whimper of welcome, is stilled (how still!);
When the spirit that answered your every mood
Is gone--wherever it goes--for good,
You will discover how much you care,
And will give your heart for the dog to tear.
We've sorrow enough in the natural way,
When it comes to burying Christian clay.
Our loves are not given, but only lent,
At compound interest of cent per cent.
Though it is not always the case, I believe,
That the longer we've kept 'em, the more do we grieve:
For, when debts are payable, right or wrong,
A short-time loan is as bad as a long--
So why in Heaven (before we are there)
Should we give our hearts to a dog to tear?
~ Rudyard Kipling
...when you sit up and take notice. Times when you know you the only place you should be is where you are right then and right there. All of the troubles and worries of day to day life fade. You are content, whole and not just living, but fully alive. This image represents one of those times in my life.
Spring is always a time of new life in our yard with parent birds bringing their fledglings to our feeders for a meal. So far this year I’ve seen black-capped chickadees, red-breasted nuthatches, downy woodpeckers and hairy woodpeckers with their babies in our yard. Last week I saw what I thought was a large poofy oregon junco chick at the feeder with its parent. Well I saw them again today and came to the realization I was totally wrong with my initial assessment. What I though was a junco parent feeding its chick turns out to be something I've never seen before, something much more interesting…
…with that being said, once we hit 250 “Likes” on my Facebook page I’ll reveal what it was that I was actually observing in the yard. In addition to that, I’ll also do a print give-away in celebration of making it a quarter of the way to 1000 “likes”. I have a few 8x12 snowy owl prints done on the metallic paper I love so much, that the winner will get to pick and choose from.