Click to enlarge

August 20, 2009

A stranger visited Riverside Park this evening.

Date: Fri, 21 Aug 2009 09:21:45 -0400
Subject: August 21

Dear Lincoln,

I was sickened when I viewed your pictures this morning. I don’t understand the purpose of the close up intimate detail of the small creature in the claws of "the stranger” and the imminent dismemberment that is implied in the numerous photos presented.
I understand that in the wild, some creatures die in order for others to live.
The numerous close ups seem "sick" to me especially sent by an individual as sensitive as you are.
You always capture the essence of the wildlife in Central Park in breathtaking detail. Dwelling on the demise of this small creature is unnecessary.
A daily viewer who admires your gift and tireless attempts to share your passion.

Windsor, CT


Dear Barbara,

Many people who view my work each day write to express their opinions which I appreciate. Without this type of feedback my work will surely stagnate. Some people are 'sickened' when I capture an airplane in the frame with a hawk because it reminds them of '911'. Some people are 'grossed out' by close-ups of insects--they tell me it makes their blood crawl. One person that I can recall recently didn't like images of frogs.
So here I am in Riverside Park yesterday blessed with the opportunity to be an observer of this natural scene; what should I do? Should I hide the images? Then that would suggest that some shameful act was taking place here. I do not believe that this is a shameful act, in fact I believe that this is a sacred act. This mouse has now ascended to something higher and is part of another wholesome and worthy animal on this earth.
I am sorry that you were repulsed by what my intention had been to delight you. At the sight of the mouse being consumed by the hawk you and other viewers which may hopefully include the custodians of the NYC Parks should be sensitized to the natural circle of life and be mindful of how our human behavior and habits affects these neighbors of ours. As for me, when I see something like this I want to make sure that there are no rodent poisons in the parks and no balloons and kite strings stuck in the trees so Nature can conduct her business without unnecessary problems.
Do not for one moment think that my heart was never grieved by the sight of the helpless mouse in the grasp of the hawk. If so then you must have completely missed who I am.


I convinced myself that it must be the Riverside Park Dad but I noted that this hawk was quite dark and eyes too yellow to be Dad.

He helped himself to some food caught along the Riverside Drive wall and perched on several of the familiar spots of the Riverside Park family.

At one point I even thought he was going to take a bath in one of their rock pools.

None of the resident family appeared to protest, in fact none of them showed up at all, so I feel he was welcomed by them.

He reminds me of Charlotte with his extra dark color.

All images above photographed on Thursday August 20, 2009.