How To… Follow the Heron

There are a few different ways to interpret this. Especially when it comes to your motivations. If you’re planning on doing something nefarious or untoward when it comes to that heron, well, I know they can defend themselves but I’m just not comfortable with setting up that sort of situation. Should herons in particular be your fancy then for the love of propriety can’t you just use a stuffed toy? Maybe with bird calls piped in if you insist on that level of depravity?

Oh sure, that’s not remotely what you meant. I think thou dost protest too much but people will start accusing me of being odd if I continue down this particular track so let’s pretend it was based on your innocent obsession with interesting ornithology. Or possibly an impulse on a purely metaphorical level. It could happen.

So, for you to attempt to shadow a heron like some kind of birdwatching ninja the first step is to hang out somewhere that herons are likely to congregate. And before you go giving yourself a pat on the back for coming up with a remarkably clever idea, zoos and the like definitely don’t count. If a heron doesn’t have the opportunity to go anywhere, how would it possibly be considered an accomplishment to follow it? No, into the wild with you, keep quiet and wait. Then get your skates on because I’ll bet they can fly faster than you can run.

On the other hand, you might have acquired some strange notion that you ought to observe the heron in order to apply some level of its philosophy to your own life. So silly, it’s owls who are renowned for their wisdom. For some reason. Maybe you simply admire the heron and aspire to have its… I don’t know, skill when it comes to fishing. You might want to investigate an evening course. Or set up your own and create new acolytes in the ways of the heron.

Follow the heron – Karine Polwart


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