MANUEL PRESTI (Italy)
Winner: Wildlife Photographer of the Year
A lone peregrine falcon sweeps into a swirling flock of starlings above a park in Rome. “I felt the fear and and the starlings’ urgent need to survive, and the psychological pressure of the falcon as dive-bombed the small birds, ” says Presti of his photograph Sky Chase.
(This was your favorite photograph)
White Paper Cranes Cast Black Shadows
It is believed that upon folding
the thousandth paper crane,
the wish of their maker come true.
I began folding my first,
thinking that at this primary step,
all the ones that went will come back.
I creased the paper, enveloping
the might of my will. I have these
air hands. I will soon send
a thousand cranes into the sky
to visit the souls of those who had
gone to take them back upon paper wings.
I begin to think that every time
I touch this paper, I want to write
on my white birds two words.
Come back. Or take me.
I will ask my cranes to tell
them that they left so soon.
(originally Untitled, Leano-Mortel-Olympia Poetry Session, Divine Grace Leano, 2007)