Sunday, March 29, 2020

Bluebird on Redbud

Bluebird on Redbud / oil on black canvas / 8x10 / $98 including shipping

HERE IN WACHAPREAGUE, the bluebirds are back. I've only seen two, and those were mere glimpses, but there's nothing else that is quite that particular blue.

My backyard feeders are full of seeds and full of hungry birds. No social distancing here! I am glad to see them back, eating their full, chattering, lighting the yard with color. No bluebirds have come to the feeder yet, but I remain hopeful and watchful.


For Today

The Dipper

Once I saw
in a quick-falling, white-veined stream,
among the leafed islands of the wet rocks,
a small bird, and knew it

from the pages of a book; it was
the dipper, and dipping he was,
as well as, sometimes, on a rock-peak, starting up
the clear, strong pipe of his voice; at this,

there being no words to transcribe, I had to
bend forward, as it were,
into his frame of mind, catching
everything I could in the tone,

cadence, sweetness, and briskneww
of his affirmative report.
Though not by words, it was
a more than satisfactory way to the

bridge of understanding. This happened
in Colorado
more than a half century ago - 
more certainly, than half my lifetime ago -

and, just as certainly, he has been sleeping for decades
in the leaves beside the stream,
his crumble of white bones, his curl of flesh
comfortable even so. 

And I still hear him - 
and whenever I open the ponderous book of riddles
he sits with his black feet hooked to the page,
his eyes cheerful, still burning with water-love - 

and thus the world is full of leaves and feathers
and comfor, and instruction. I do not even remember
your name, great river, 
but since that hour I have lived

in the joy of the body as full and clear
as falling water; the pleasures of the mind
like a dark bird dipping in and out, tasting and singing. 

- Mary Oliver

No comments: