I took a bunch of pictures to share, but now even that seems too much of a bother.
I had hoped that Poe could settle in at the Salmon Creek school in Occidental. The school is set on 20 acres of meadow and redwood forest and wetland. It also has an enormous fenced garden where I fancied Poe could hang out and regain a semblance of self. Mazie and I took him there in the afternoon and set him free.
He enjoyed digging and exploring with his beak. He hopped about in the wood chips and tussled with the greenery. Mazie read quietly beneath an arbor. Other ravens cawed out from the surrounding forest. Lovely clouds piled high in the sky and that afternoon the light felt marvelous and true. I called Kerry. We both were hopeful. Perhaps Poe’s rehabilitation could become part of a school science program. He could stay in the garden and mend. And kids at the school could learn what it meant to be in close proximity to wildlife and maybe they figure out how to engineer some structure that would meet the needs of a wounded raven.
You see, this was all going to work out, or so it seemed.
But school would not start for a few more days. The afternoon waned. We gathered Poe into his carrier and in the setting light we drove up the hill and out of the valley. Penny, the co-owner of the Holy Cow had offered her house up as a refuge. She had an enormous chicken coop – the chicken hotel, she called it. And hotel it was. Ten feet high, fifteen across, open chicken wire walls all around facing out into meadow and oaks. Poe took to the space immediately. He ate and preened and hopped about in the straw. Families and ravens flying over head would call out as they headed home to their roost. Poe listened and called out in return.
Michael and Penny and I and even Mazie were elated. Poe was safe. I was safe, we all were, in the august darkness.