On the Track of Unknown Animals

Barbara Litkowski


The Piasa
A Third Grade Specialty Report
By Max Canady

My third grade specialty is the piasa. I wanted to choose Thunderbirds, but Mrs. Spencer said no because they aren't real. Mrs. Spencer knows a lot about weather and presidents and how to sneeze into your elbow, but she doesn't know anything about Thunderbirds. I do because i am a cryptozoologist. We study hidden animals. Thunderbirds are as real as bluebirds, only shyer and less colorful.

At first Mrs. Spencer said no to piasas, too. I had to remind her that there is a Piasa Island and a Piasa Bank in Alton, Illinois, where i go horseback riding. I could tell she was thinking because she started pinching the skin on her neck. Mrs Spencer pinches her neck when doesn't have an answer. It makes a red ugly mark, but I did not tell her that. I also did not tell her that piasa is the Native American word for Thunderbird. It means Bird That Devours Man.