mister jones knows me well. i thought we had said our goodbyes, i thought that i had sent him on his way for his halibut fishing trip, but after i had settled myself back at the painting table, the front doorbell rang. there he is, standing at the door, holding a decomposing bird, his hand at my eye level. i knew you would want some feathers he said. i didn‘t want to throw it away without giving you opportunity to gather feathers, he explained. i don’t know what kind of bird this is, with all-black feathers, all black except for the tips of the ones just above the tail a colour i had not seen before in our local birds. a colour much like one in my watercolour palette. quinacridone gold. we said our final goodbye and i stood there on the deck pulling some feathers. my gosh the deteriorating bird stunk to high heaven, but my gosh i had to have those feathers. i was thinking as i prayed my thank you over the gone life in front of me, this is something umber dove would do.