Thursday, July 30, 2015

Those Handsome Magpies

The text below is copied off the scrapbook perchance the picture doesn't get big enough to read easily. Squinting doesn't work as well as it should.
             The magpie has attitude along with his bad conscience.  He is willing to             
             steal anything he wants to eat, but when food is set out for him he acts
             as though he was stealing it.
             Years ago we had a black cat, an excellent hunter and a good mama.  One
               day as she returned home down the edge of our gravel road, a flock of 
              magpie descended in a whirl of white and iridescent black feathers and
              noisy insults.  Banking sharply they came down on the road behind her and began to follow on foot.  Puss’s eyes narrowed slightly and her ears went back but she kept her dignity and kept walking.  So did they.  Her ears flattened, and after some particularly obnoxious comment, whirled to face them.
They leapt back nervously, cackling skittishly, prepared to take flight if necessary.  Puss stood her ground for a moment.  The birds looked around as if absolutely nothing was the matter.  She turned and continued on her way with the dignity that only an offended cat can muster.  The harangue continued, and her tail began to lash.  The magpies were delighted.  They fell into line behind her, and for all the world like little boys mimicking an old person limping down the street, impudently switched their tails side to side and continued their noisy commentary.  Finally she couldn’t take it any more, broke into an undignified run, and streak
ed for the safety of the house, leaving her shredded dignity with the boisterous mob who cheerfully flew laughing away like the raven in the old nursery rhyme.  Where they went then was anyone’s guess, but Puss glowered under the step for quite some time after.

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