Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Divine Blue Peacock at The Cathedral of St John the Divine


I'd been watching Isolde and the invisible eyasses for several hours, and I'd kept hearing a peacock scream. It's their usual call but rather unnervingly like a scream to the uninitiated. I'm told, that when the peacocks first came to the Cathedral, until the neighbors got used to them, the police were periodically called out to see who was being murdered over there.
So when I packed up my stuff, walked round the corner and heard it as if peacock was 5 feet away, I looked round. And there several levels up the hill were the tips of a peacock tail shivering in full display. Up the hill I went.


Peacock of course heard me coming and when I came in sight there he was sitting the fence. It occurred to me that perhaps he was attempting to impersonate some sort of exotic bush. Not convincing.
As I didn't pass by or turn around and leave, eventually he got up, rose to full height and stared. I was not menaced.

I suspect he realized that subterfuge hadn't worked and that he was cornered so he measured the jump to the ground...

...leapt it,

and headed my way towards a possible exit.
Eye fixed on me, Blue Peacock decides to pass.

Then trots down the stairs, tail feathers awiggle.

The cock-a-the-walk surveys his domain. He starts back toward me and I sprinkle a little seed on the sidewalk. I'd prefer we were friends. He does have very large, very sharp, feet.

Though there is a neat hole in the wall of the Cathedral that accesses the Peacock house, where the peacock chow is plentiful and high roosts are available, no self-respecting public peacock is going to refuse a little bird seed on the side. This peacock in particular isn't fond of the indoor roosts unless there is intense inclement weather. He much prefers sleeping up a tall tree just outside the Peacock House where he has been known to come down rapidly and land directly in front of people, scaring the you know what out of the tourists.

Up on the fence he jumps,

Then into a small tree. In truth peacocks do a lot of branching, lengthy flights not really being one of their fortes.
11:10AM
It begins to pour. Note the drops beading up on peacock. Not having an oil gland for preening, the water does not bead up on me or my equipment so off to the subway I go.
The hours spent watching Isolde and the invisible eyasses, before Peacock and I interacted will be posted soon.
WILD NEW YORK!
Also this evening was the first showing of Wild New York at the Anthology Archive Film Festival down in the East Village. There to watch and participate in the Q and A were James O'Brien, http://yojimbot.blogspot.com/ , yours truly, Francois Portmann, www.fotoportmann.com/ , Peter Richter, http://queensraptors.blogspot.com/ , The Horvaths, Bobby, Cathy, and Sadie, and blog contributor Merisha plus a Kestrel, a Red-tailed Hawk, and a Peregrine Falcon, all of whom were a smash hit. And a grand time was had by all. As I was holding the Red-tailed hawk I didn't take many photographs but some of the others did. Pix should be available on their blogs and perhaps mine very soon.
There will also be other showings of the film as the Festival continues.
P.S. The venue, down in the East Village, was right across the street from Samantha Raven's Cemetery. Francois showed me where she sometimes roosts in a tree but she'd chosen another spot this evening. I'll get a look at her one of these days come hell or high water.
Donegal Browne

1 comment:

Smokey said...

These birds are awesome ................ http://smokeysmountain.blogspot.com/2010/01/blue-rock-peacock.html