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  • Writer's pictureMatt Smythe


Updated: Jul 10, 2020

We settle in the furrows. Busted cornstalk & camo. Coffee, pipe and tobacco for me, graham crackers, juice and a goose call for Cam. My pipesmoke drifts from the embers, disappears weakly east. The waiting is easy, we have our distractions.

Sunrise discovers our black-gray-white decoys in their plastic readiness. Birds wind up their volleys on the water—hollow and haunting echoes in their distance—a quarter-mile as the crow flies. Without weather to push, they’re up late.

They materialize from below the treeline, wings and necks, full white breasts, the whistle and buzz of pinion feathers. My son calls to the sky, to birds in their stealthy ascent. Three sets look, circle, continue east. Strings on the horizon. Silent as dawn.

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