“Wherever I am, when the wind is in the northwest and the air has a bite to it, the view from Hawk Mountain spreads itself before me in my memory and I long to be a part of it…” Michael Harwood, The View from Hawk Mountain
Last night I dreamed about broadwings—thousands of dark pepper spots circling in a blue sky. The hawks swirled in loose circles, impossible to count. I sat atop a rocky mountain but looked only at the sky. I was very disappointed when I woke and realized it was only a dream.
It’s almost that time of year again. I know that’s why I dreamed about them. In another two weeks I hope broadwings will fill the sky someplace where I’m watching them. I didn’t go hawkwatching this past weekend, though I wanted to, and I’ve been thinking about it ever since. I talked myself out of going because of the high gas prices and the sad realization that it was still very early in the hawkwatching season. At the current price of gas, my trip would cost me approximately $1 per hawk. In another week or so, as the number of hawks builds, that price should drop to $.50 or even $.25 per hawk and that, I tell myself, I can afford.
I am like this every September. The lure of a mountain top and the flight of raptors draws me more strongly than any magnet I’ve ever felt. It must be primal, some urge left in my bones from my most ancient ancestors.