The Battle Bison
In the heart of Darby Creek’s sprawling wilderness, a solitary bison stood as a living relic, the final embodiment of a bygone era when herds roamed the open plains. Its hooves imprinted the soil, and its eyes held a mystique that transcended time. Whispered tales among the Ohio locals spoke of the bison’s extraordinary gift – the power to peer into the past lives of the land it trod upon. Those who ventured close enough to meet its gaze would find themselves transported, their senses entwined with visions of ghostly herds on the horizon and the songs of indigenous peoples carried by the wind.
The bison saw the faces of the Cheyenne, Lakota, Pawnee, and countless other tribes that had shared these plains. It saw families working together to build their homes, weaving intricate stories into every stitch of the lodges that protected them from the elements. It felt the unity that existed between humans, nature, and the bison—a harmony that was the cornerstone of existence.
I had heard these tales and felt an irresistible pull to capture the bison’s enigmatic power through my lens. Armed with my camera and curiosity, I journeyed to find the last Darby Creek bison. I encountered the majestic creature in a clearing bathed in the soft glow of twilight. With bated breath, I locked eyes with the bison and felt a connection. As the bison’s gaze met mine, time seemed to unravel, and I was transported to moments long past, where the land teemed with life and the echoes of history whispered through the rustling leaves.
~ Robert David Atkinson