By Larry Cory
I truly enjoyed spending the afternoon with you. You and I are a lot alike I fear. Both find peace and tranquility in nature. We don’t have to fire a shot or catch a trout to enjoy what to others might seem a waste of time and energy. I can sit alone in a deer blind and enjoy the Ermine running around my blind or listen to a Pileated Woodpecker calling and tapping on a dead tree trunk. A Ruby Crowned Kinglet landed on my gun barrel one day. I watched as a bobcat sneaked past my blind one morning, warned by the sudden silence around me as all the squirrels hid in fear. I watched as a Fisher did the same, and it was some time before the normal activity around my blind resumed. Listening to the mincing steps of a whitetail as it approached through the frozen, fallen leaves… and listening to the popping of the sap in the trees as the morning sun began to warm them always makes me happy. Riding back to camp from a long and fruitless Elk hunt, we listened to all the Elk we didn’t see during the day as they bugled their hearts out all the way home to our tents. I duck hunted with two good friends and two guides one day on a farm at the tip of the thumb. Without saying a word ALL of us failed to fire a single shot as thousands of ducks came in and started to land in our decoys. We were mesmerized by the magnificent sight of so many Mallards and Black Ducks coming right at our faces. It was awesome! When they finally figured out what was up they all left in a hurry, and we stood up and hooted and hollered like a bunch of kids. No shots fired. One of so many sights that I have been privileged to witness over the years. Your poem reminds me of why we are outdoorsmen… not killers, not hunting or fishing just to bring something home in our pickup truck, or doing it for bragging rights… but hunting for the sights, sounds and experiences that those who do not partake will never know. They are poor beyond words.
Larry Cory has been one of Michigan’s most prominent wildlife, sporting and commercial artists for almost 50 years. Cory, of Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, is also an avid outdoorsman whose close contact with nature is reflected in his art. His original art and limited edition prints hang in collections throughout North America. Larry is recognized as a top painter of Conservation Stamp Prints. He has won Michigan’s Trout and Salmon Stamp competitions in 1980, 1983, 1990 and 1996.