Pheasants and Ravens Pheasants assemble in wary dozens around blue hoppers in the private woods. Ravens fend for themselves, and own all the highest treetops. Pheasants are their own autumn landscapes, finished off with christmassy heads. Ravens are whatever colour you require, provided it’s black. Pheasants echo their one word for alarm across the country miles. Ravens talk fluently in gutturals it’s hard to place precisely. Pheasants fly if they must, struggle to clear hedges, panic themselves into roadkill. Ravens glide, soar, and plunge, riding the air’s invisible rollercoasters. Pheasants end up plucked, displayed in plastic packs at farmers’ markets. Ravens keep glaring out of antique woodcuts, the dark stars of undying dramas. Mark Totterdell
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