For many, the sport of hunting can be controversial. Perhaps I can write a future article on the virtues of hunting. But I can understand people’s point of view when they observe outdoor channel stars high-fiving and performing a jovial dance right after flinging an arrow through a deer’s heart. The perception, however, is different from the reality. No hunter that I know (and I’ve been hunting for years) actually takes pleasure in killing an animal, and, to be honest, wild game do receive a sporting chance; which is much more than can be said for the thousands of grocery-store-variety chickens, cows or hogs.
Back in September, I gave about 100 doves a very fair chance. I managed to only knock one from the air, and my companions didn’t fair much better. If you’ve ever hunted dove, you know this to be a familiar outcome. Anyway, I’d like to share a poem I recently put together. It came to me after that day on the field. Maybe you can identify with it. Hope you enjoy!
by S Scott Johnson
Streaming over the dawn-lit canopy.
Defying gravity, escaping lead, pellets
Raining overhead. Gray Barons,
Rulers of air.
Gliding through the man-made storm.
Plastic shells sum, empty mementos lining
The ground below. Magicians,
Sleight of hand.
Barreling over wild-eyed, bewildered men.
Shooting again, and again, shaking hats at
The sad stats. Mathematicians,
All bets off.