From: <>
Newsgroups: talk.bizarre
Subject: Raptor
Date: Wed, 1 Dec 1999 19:56:42 -0600
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Bert and Ernie lunged aloft in smooth angular
fluidity (like hawking and spitting, then away
from the springboard in a one-and-a-half gainer,
only wrong, wrong, wrong, up instead of down),
turkey vultures sleek and glossy and in the
prime of predation. Lords of the Bottom-Feeders,
ugly in their superior evolutionary niche, fey
and unafraid in the glory of their mottled wattles,
they cycled aloft riding tireless engines anchored
in kinetically convexed keelbones...

"So what's for lunch?" Bert inquired slyly.

"I don't know, whaddya feel like?" Ernie feigned
indifference, beak-synching the inevitable reply as
they slid into seven-sweeps-a-minute cruising
altitude;"(Let's go check the herd, Ernie...)"

Bert, swiveling his neck in the pterodactyloidian
360 globular snicker-snack, snapped his knife and
fork in the involuntary clack-clack-clack of the
all clear no attack signal still unnoised after a
hundred megayears; "Let's go check the herd, Ernie."

Wheeling with style and grace they fell towards
the granite escarpment far below, caught the
chortling thermal and sailed up into the scorching
highlands of the Texas sun.

"Why can't we get fast food for a change? I'm tired
of this gourmet carrion alla time," Ernie whistle-
whined; "I could go for some nice, tenderized,
asphalt-grilled roadkill about now. Dog, maybe skunk,
something spicy..." Bert turned to him and undulated,
and they burst into song:

"Dead skunk in the middle of the Road,
a little bit flat, a little bit old,
It might smell bad, might taste bold,
But when you try it you'll be sold..."

"Awk, awk, awk!" they screeched, wafting in and out
of each other's waffling winding wake, prehensile
protracted necks weaving in sinusoidal counterpoint,
timed cancellation signaling high humorous elan among
their kind.

"WTF, why not," thought Ernie, just as the hypersonic
squeal permeated his rippling airstream.

     Bert, then
           Ernie slid into
                      A wall of air,
                                Suddenly vertical,
                      Pinions trembling,
           Left wing giving ground
     the finger,
Right wing stalling, aloft to the piquancy of the
     killer calling,
                      the hawk poised,
                                then falling,
                      upon the smallthing,
           up, up, and away in a blur
     of grey...

"Smartass..." opined Bert.
"...Showoff," echoed Ernie.

"Nine for the dive, though," Bert admitted truculently.
"Ten for the talon work, not a bit of splatter!" Ernie
air-Astaired, overcome by the emotion of the moment.

They wheeled about and dipping, insinuated themselves
into the interleave of the shearing winds, canting to
ride the bubbling burbling turbulence, accelerating to
feather-rippling velocity, alone and together in that
moment of raping the sky their mother and their lover...

"Let's try the mule farm," Ernie suggested helpfully;
"Lots of miscarriages this time of year..."

"No, I want something more exotic, let's try the Emu
ranch, those are some dumb fucking critters...hard to
believe they've got feathers."

"So does my ass," Ernie responded...

"Awk, awk, awk..."


But as always, it was the cattle that pulled them in
for the real perusal - Bert was such a sucker for
beef - it's what's for dinner, you know...

"Look, look, look!" Bert was literally beside himself,
spilling the liftflow with alternating twitches of his
span, skyskittering sideways as he shed airspeed and
descended like a brick.

By the time Ernie had circled back Bert was ripping
and tearing, gulping gobbets of intestine extruded
from the lower gastro-intestinal tract opening of the
bloated calf. Ernie noted immediately the shadowy
forms strewn in an irregular ring around the scene of

"Bert, wait a minute!" Ernie rose up, in the present
position, wings in distal superior stretch, worst
suspicions confirmed by the torn and ravaged belly
of the calf, the dead coyotes encircling.

Too late. Bert sqwawked, affixed one feral pupil
(already dilating) on his partner, shuddered and
darted his beak under his wing then fell over.

"Bert, Bert! Shake it off, dammit!" Ernie strode over
to his pal, beating the ground in frustration; "You
always fall for the coyote-bait scam, you dumbass..."

His talon reached out and clenched, ripped out a
clutch of feathers. Again and again...

The ten molar HCl in Bert's stomach would make short
work of the Strychnine and Warfarin the enraged
rancher had pumped into the dead calf, the fourth in
six weeks.  In the meantime Bert would really be
sweating it...

Ernie defecated on his bud, raked him three times
for good luck and hurled himself into the azure void.

You can always tell who your friends are...


Omine Domine, the shadow of the stuka ripples as the
barest tinge of obscure indefinition racing across
the autumnal deadgold clinging to the land...towards
I-35 and the bounty, the cornucopia, the richness of
the harvest where steel defeats, but never eats, flesh.