Friday, January 08, 2010

Entry #69

Mob Mentality
by Laughingwolf


Winging my way through the pre-dawn sky, I sailed to the top of the lone pine towering above the scrawny spruces and firs, the birches and cottonwoods. As is my right, the new 'corvus brachyrhynchos' regent of the boreal forest, I strutted and preened on the stout perch, preparing to summon my comrades and friends.

Before the first streak of pink in the heavens appeared, I cleared my throat of the previous night's Bacchanalian orgy of meat, drink, and delights of the fairer sex, and sent forth my raucous commands: "CARAW, CARAW, CARAWWWW!"

My first round was not yet ended when the most trustworthy of the band had joined in with a cacophonous chorus, and within another minute the voices of thousands of my legions were raised to welcome the glory of the rising sun.

At my command, they took to the air, 48-thousand strong, black wings flashing, black eyes beading, black hearts soaring, then breaking off into obsidian armies, for today we had the numbers to finally defeat our mortal enemy, the Great Horned Owl, a society of which was scattered over a two hundred square mile area.

We descended upon them like the proverbial black plague, killing young and old, feeble and virile, leaving not a single survivor.

Today we have lived up to the term, A MURDER OF CROWS.

62 comments:

adrienne trafford said...

i could picture this vividly...they were like crow warriors - very well written

laughingwolf said...

thx adrienne, appreciate it :)

Sarah Laurenson said...

Awesome, LW.

I was right there, feeling that pride.

onipar... said...

Ha, nice ending. I have a dark sense of humor and found it funny. :-)

Nevine said...

Perfectly written! I could see every description, LW. Very nicely and vividly rendered, and a high pleasure to read. Awesome!

Nevine

pjd said...

I love "black eyes beading, black hearts soaring"

This is class, LW, and a feeling of realism in the turf wars between races. Definitely feels like a revolution, the lower classes finally overrunning the aristocracy.

My one quibble is that I like it better if you remove the final line. I think it's complete and powerful if you end it at "... not a single survivor."

Bernita said...

Oh LW, this is neat, neat, neat !
Perfectly visual, excellent clarity, smooth story line, and a wonderful choice of words.
It soars!
( my verification is "wingen"!)

Leatherdykeuk said...

Oh! Splendid!

Bernita said...

LW, if you did remove that last line, you could use it as a splendid title.

Michelle H. said...

Quite a nice avian take, LW! I love the pace.

Aniket said...

And now, who'll deliver all my mails? Dayum. :)

Very unique take on the prompt!

Lena said...

That is so perfect! Great writing with unique style.

JaneyV said...

Oh Wolfie you have done it again. Love. It.

black wings flashing, black eyes beading, black hearts soaring, then breaking off into obsidian armies,

What a great visual!

Well done.

Ayodele Morocco-Clarke said...

Not at all sure about this one.

Aimee Laine said...

Wow! That was vivid! What great selection of words to show everything in the story. And the use of the term, too!

laughingwolf said...

thx everyone...

you're right, pete, the last line is pretty much irrelevant... too late now everyone's seen it :(

Craig said...

I enjoyed the symbolisim.

laughingwolf said...

thx craig...

Kartik said...

Very vivid picture you paint.. nice!

catvibe said...

Laughingwolf my friend, as I was reading this I felt transformed into this crow leader of yours. I loved the visual and I was ready to go fly off and attack. Just excellent. I loved this very much. :-) The society of the Great Horned Owl. Funny!

laughingwolf said...

kartik and cat, i thank you both...

raine said...

Oh, my.
It has a majestic tone, like the gathering of a group of proud warriors before battle.
Well done!

laughingwolf said...

aww thx so much, raine :)

kashers said...

Ah the Battle for Territory. Loved the symbolism in this piece.

laughingwolf said...

thank you so much, kashers :)

Laurel said...

This was superb. I heard and saw the swooping legions of crows on the wing while I read. Great description of not only the behavior we've had a chance to observe but the speculative reason for it.

Great work!

laughingwolf said...

kind words indeed, thx laurel :)

AidanF said...

This brought back memories of living in graduate housing where the crows haunted the trees every night. You captured their caws perfectly. Thankfully, they never haunted me ;)

Vesper said...

black wings flashing, black eyes beading, black hearts soaring, then breaking off into obsidian armies

What an image, LW, I still have goose bumps...
Well done!

laughingwolf said...

seems you lucked out, aidan ;)

thx v, glad you like it :)

Tara said...

The title sums this up pefectly. Wonderful writing and great job on the imagery.

Four Dinners said...

Oh eck!

That is some stupendous writing old bean!

I bow to you.

Supurbly written and...frankly, I am virtually speechless.

(which, I hasten to add...is a novelty)

Leah said...

I like it! I felt all puffed up and wanted to shake my feathers as I read along :)

wrath999 said...

You made us (the readers) part of the Murder of Crows. I enjoyed your tale

BernardL said...

That was simply wonderful.

laughingwolf said...

tara, four dinners, leah, wrath, and bernard, thank you so much for your kind comments, greatly appreciated...

Deb Smythe said...

Ooo, I really like this one. Loved the voice, formal for old Commander Crow.

Chris Eldin said...

Terrific sensory detail! Really enjoyed reading this one, LW! Funny thing, I am not kidding, today I saw the most crows in one place that I have ever seen in my life. There must've been a thousand or more, in two large groups swoopign into each other. They landed in a field and the field literally turned black.

laughingwolf said...

aww thx chris, really appreciate it!

hope you had your camera handy?

peter davidson said...

Great read, vicious too!

David Barber said...

Great piece, enjoyed it. Thanks for reading mine.

Regards, David.

davidbarberfiction.blogspot.com

laughingwolf said...

thx david... and my pleasure :)

Sandy said...

Awesome imagery. Moving narration. Great use of the intriging collective term "Murder of Crows."

Rabid Fox said...

Oh, those dastardly crows. This was cool, and I liked the imagery of an army of crows acting like a Roman legion.

Karen said...

This is really good, LW! I especially like this image:
"black wings flashing, black eyes beading, black hearts soaring, then breaking off into obsidian armies..."

The "murder of crows" is very clever.

laughingwolf said...

sandy, fox and karen, thx so much...

have enjoyed all of jason's contests, the awesome entries amaze me

Anonymous said...

Interesting POV. I like how you worked in the origin of a phrase without using it in your title. "Mob Mentality" is what I've been dealing with for years. --JR

J. M. Poirot said...

Really enjoyed your use of language. loved the words you chose - bacchanalian, cacophonous, obsidian, words that writers love listening to them roll off our tongues. great visual story and ending.

truevoid said...

impressive writing.

laughingwolf said...

merci bien, jmp... et truevoid :)

Katherine Tomlinson said...

Masterfyk phrasing that really sells a dark intelligence animating these winged murderers. Evocative and chilling.

Katherine Tomlinson said...

That would be "masterful" if a crow were typing it out.

laughingwolf said...

lol... figgered that, katherine, and thx :)

My Blog 2.0 (Dottie) said...

Such a strong piece, a masterful army of conquering crows!

Loved it!

Dottie :)

McKoala said...

A Crow Battalion and leader victorious! I really like it, Mr Wuff. (48-thousand strong...that's scary...)

Terri said...

Awesome. This reads like the battle-scene in an epic movie.
For the record, I love the last line - should be followed by an evil "MWahahahahaha" :)

Jane said...

ninja crows..cool! liked the play on the collective noun, but awww i do love owls and was sad at their defeat..think those ninjas would have met their match if they took on the squirrels though...watched a scrap between crow and squirrel once..the squirrel was awesome

Corra McFeydon said...

Nice job! I love that you write this in the POV of the crow. I almost wanted it to end on 'the glorous rising of the sun.' Could be my human desire to see the wild as majestic and forget the fact that - like any carnivore - they must kill to eat.

*and sent forth my raucous commands: "CARAW, CARAW, CARAWWWW!"*

Great line.

Best of luck!

~ Corra McFeydon

Tessa said...

Vivid imagery - beautifully executed. (LOL, thats NOT supposed to be a pun.) One of my favourites for sure!

laughingwolf said...

dottie, mc, terri, jane, corra and tessa, i thank you for your generous comments, really appreciated! :)

Aerin said...

Dear Entrants #1-105,

I have read your pieces so that I can fairly participate in the Readers' Choice vote. (I read all of them through last week, before I started commenting.) I will be coming back around to offer my keep/tweak comment, but I didn't want anyone to snark.

Cheers,
Aerin (#236)

laughingwolf said...

thx tons, aerin...