Eyes in the Sky

Dr. Neubronner, ahead of his time.
Long before Orwell’s 1984
big brother watching you,
doc released his pigeons.
Cameras strapped to tiny chests
they reported fowl news.
Many photos feather-framed,
neighborhoods on display.

Generations later,
their jobs stolen
usurped by drones.
They simply gather now
where cracked corn is tossed.
And when they do take flight,
their only sign of rebellion?
An occasional shit upon your head.


2020-04-15 (2)

Written for Day 15 of National Poetry Writing Month: prompt at Toads is to explore the idea of someone’s folly: the concept of building something decorative, eccentric, extravagant. . . transcending the normal range.

Dr Julius Neubronner’s Miniature Pigeon Camera
In 1908 Dr Julius Neubronner patented a miniature pigeon camera activated by a timing mechanism. The invention brought him international notability after he presented it at international expositions in Dresden, Frankfurt and Paris in 1909–1911. Spectators in Dresden could watch the arrival of the camera-equipped carrier pigeons, and the photos were immediately developed and turned into postcards which could be purchased.  Photos from same article in the Public Domain Review. This post is adapted from a poem I originally wrote in 2016.

Hope I gave you a smile with this one! 

11 thoughts on “Eyes in the Sky

  1. Nancy Jahnke April 15, 2020 / 3:34 pm


    Sent from my iPhone


    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian April 17, 2020 / 10:16 am

      He was definitely an entrepreneur, right?


  2. Sherry Marr April 15, 2020 / 5:50 pm

    Well, this was an interesting read. He was clearly ahead of his time! Cool.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian April 17, 2020 / 10:16 am

      It’s amazing what you can learn when you google early inventions and early patents! 🙂


    • lillian April 17, 2020 / 10:17 am

      Really is, right? The photos of the pigeons with little cameras on them just makes me smile.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. sanaarizvi April 15, 2020 / 8:21 pm

    Haha this is absolutely brilliant! 😀 Great write, Lillian 💝

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian April 17, 2020 / 10:18 am

      It is a funny little idea, right? Seeing the photos really makes me chuckle.


  4. Ali Grimshaw April 17, 2020 / 12:04 pm

    What a fantastic post. Isn’t it interesting how things change over time. Human beings can be so innovative. It gives me hope for creative problem-solving in the future. The photos in this are a wonderful addition.


    • lillian April 18, 2020 / 12:00 pm

      Thank you, Ali. So glad you enjoyed. Oh yes….the entrepreneurial spirit lives! My hope now is the scientists and docs and biologists etc can find a vaccine for this horrid pandemic virus!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Geri Lawhon May 30, 2020 / 9:08 am

    Thanks for the history lesson, and the smile from the last line.


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