location: bear valley
backstory: during the third week of march, i'm in the wood shop making the first frames for signs of spring, a pair of sandhill cranes. making frames for each print has become a simple, meditative practice with the photo as inspiration.
there is the quality, color, grain of the wood that i match to the photo. while making the frame, the photo image is constantly present. cutting and grinding wood, imagining the sandhill pair that will live in this frame.
during a break i hear a faint, distant bird call that instantly draws my photographer's ear (it's not just the eye we use). could be the canadian geese in the pond down below, but not quite. could be the ever present doves, quail or jay, but, also... not quite.
the call comes again. that distinctive half gargle, half gobble of the sandhills. from mid february into march, i am expectantly listening for this call.
standing outside, scanning the sky - nothing. maybe it's my imagination
another call and finally i see a v-formation flock, maybe 200 sandhills at 10,000 or more feet altitude.
the scene touches something deep inside. a release of a deep expectation, listening for my high flying friends.
maybe they stopped at seneca where this photo was taken a few years ago. they might also stop at fox valley further north, two of their favorite resting spots around these parts along their long journey - heading home.