The intrepid readiness, the terrible eyes.
The wild God of the world is sometimes merciful to those
That ask mercy, not often to the arrogant.
You do not know him, you communal people, or you have forgotten him;
Intemperate and savage, the hawk remembers him;
Beautiful and wild, the hawks, and men that are dying, remember him.
— Hurt Hawks by Robinson Jeffers
HT: S. King
THAT WAS yesterday via King. Morning brings this via Hyland:
Many years ago near the final question of a final job interview for a position I needed but didn’t really want, for some company that did something unimportant in Prague I was asked by the hiring manager that old question about what kind of animal you would be and why. I had read about different answers to this question and in which scenarios to use different animals, but at the moment I simply exhaled all the wind out of me and slouched down in my chair. I no longer wanted the job. The question was silly and I had partially forgotten which choice was best for this middle manager gig, so I sat in a petulant silence that made her and the department manager feel a bit awkward.
“Well, what animal?” She finally asked.
No longer wanting the job I turned to honesty instead of pretenses, thinking it would disqualify my candidacy.
“I don’t know. I guess a hawk or eagle. A high-flying predatory bird.”
“There’s a Buddhist saying that you can’t take a holy man away from the top of a mountain.”
“Okay. So why a hawk?”
“Well, these birds can fly higher than some mountains. They can see in all directions for hundreds of kilometers, yet they’ve also evolved with binocular vision to see the tiniest detail on the ground. They can distinguish a mouse from a rock from hundreds of feet in the air. They move fast and have few predators. They dominate the skies, can see everything all at once, both big and small, near and far, and move quickly toward any direction. I think I would feel free up there.”