As Sad as A Widow

mountainLike an impressionist painting, we need some distance from today’s beauty to appreciate it. Aki and I walk on a beach shadowed by Douglas Island’s mountainous spine. In the extended dusk even the party colored plumage of harlequin ducks looks dull. Across Lynn Canal cold smoke fog tatters and ducksreforms over the sun lit Chilkat Mountains. The mountains that rise behind Smugglers Cove stand in full sun when not blocked by the nervous fog. Aki and I are a bit nervous too. I blame the canine keening we heard while still in the forest. Nothing sounds as sad as the call of a dog in pain. I think of turning back but push on in case someone’s pet is caught in a leg hold trap. Aki wags her tail at my decision but is soon whining when someone hunkered down on the beach fires a shotgun. A murder of crows, at the time hidden among rocks in the tidal zone, erupts into flight. Red headed mergansers, mallards, harlequin ducks also take to the air. The little dog looks as sad as a new widow so we turn our backs on the dancing fog for the quiet of the forest.crows

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