• by Jean-Francois Podevin

Rare Birds of North America: The ALLEGHENY Question MARK

From the distant past that is the year 1997, from the depths of my studio: rarest of the Rare Birds of North America: The ALLEGHENY Question MARK If mankind is slowly beginning to unveil some of the great secrets of the Universe, the mystery of the Allegheny Question Mark might as well be the endless enigma. Rarest among the rare birds, the Question Mark is a consummate bird watcher's Holy Grail. This innocuous Partridge and its family beholds in its pastoral beauty the power to cast a spell of Borgesian dimensions. Indeed, if you had so much as glanced at a Mark crossing your path, its "afterimage", would become an indelible fixation silhouetted in front of your mind's eye. The only way out of this puzzling ordeal would be to take along an innocent birdwatcher on a quest for the rare bird. Once in the Mark's vicinity, look away while you let your companion be the first to gaze at it through binoculars. The curse of the Allegheny Question Mark will be lifted immediately after hearing your trail mate scream your name between two expletives. The Question Mark scampers around the Allegheny trails preceded by up to three Marklings. Their little red heads add to the dramatic stance of the Question Mark heralding the mother of all questions surrounding our existence: "WHY?..."