Thursday, June 14, 2007

More Storks

Distant Thunder 8.5" x 11" pencil

One night, way up there in their nests, both stork parents stayed strong as the wind blew their feathers. Papa stork seemed to keep watch through most of the night, while standing on one leg. Mama stork curved her body around the eggs.
As the winds increased, Mama Stork seemed to slide over, and took refuge under Papa Stork as he balanced on one foot. He pulled his neck low, and tucked his beak among his feathers. I wondered how those thin little legs could stand so strong, for so long, against the wind.
Through my speakers, I could hear the thunder rolling and the wind blowing, so far away, in a distant land.
I thought that, perhaps, my great-grandparents, who came from Prussia in 1867, might have witnessed a similar scene in their homeland. Storks, raising their young, gliding about the countryside, perched high on chimneys, towers, or in trees.
During the night, the webcams switched to black and white, which still worked well for pencil drawings.

Pacing Stork 8.5" x 11" pencil

After watching the storks on web cams from Poland and Germany for a while, I can see how they might have been given character by cartoonists and writers. This stork seems to be pacing, hands behind his back, as we see in movies of worried, about-to-be fathers, or even doctors. I'm sure that I have seen storks given such human characteristics in cartoons. He seems to be patting his foot with anxiety, waiting on the eggs to hatch. Maybe he was waiting on his turn to sit on the eggs. Or, just possibly, he was waiting to bring a human baby, suspended from the stork's long beak, hanging in a diaper, to waiting parents on the ground. Just as in the stories a lot of people were told when they asked where babies come from.

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