FEATHERY PHOTO BOMBING – Marilyn Armstrong

Marilyn Armstrong is a favorite. This morning’s post seems . . . well . . . downright serendipitous!

Serendipity Seeking Intelligent Life on Earth

I always know there’s a bird on the other side of the feeder by the way it swings in the air. A lot of the ladderback woodpeckers like to stay where they can’t see me … and I can’t take pictures. I also know they are there because sometimes I see a feather sticking out of somewhere or suddenly a beak — or even the bird’s head appears, then vanishes.

Goldfinch

I sometimes stand for half an hour with the camera aimed and focused … and there’s nothing. I give up, put the camera down, turn around and there are half-a-dozen birds. Cardinals, woodpeckers, and a whole flock of goldfinches. And more.

Today, there were a lot of birds when I got to the kitchen and almost none after that. It was a warm but drippy day. It wasn’t exactly raining, but it wasn’t exactly not raining. We had to put…

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Nets

cherry-pieVerse — by Steve Shoemaker

We lug heavy bags of birdseed
from store to car to garage
steel storage can to feeders.
We keep squirrels away.
We watch the birds feast.

We fertilize and water and prune
the young fruit trees in the orchard
and see blossoms, then growing fruit.
Cherries are loved by birds and us.
Let birds eat seeds–nets mean pies.

Verse – Morning Chorus

Steve's prairie haven - home of the Urbana  "Morning Chorus"

Steve’s prairie haven – home of the Urbana “Morning Chorus”

We live near a tree farm
that birds love.
Transplanted small trees
around our home
are now large,
and at first light, noisy.

Springtime is the loudest.
Breeding has begun.
The travelers have returned:
finches, swallows, robins,
hummers, whippoorwills.

Our dead end rural road
has little traffic even later
in the day–none at 5 am in May.
No sound but bird song:
Coos, chirps, whistles,
call and response.

The choir has no conductor
that we see.

– Steve Shoemaker, Urbana, IL, May 9, 2013

The Promise of a Storm

There is a warning whisper in the wind.
The birds have heard and gather on a wire
to watch. My old ears cannot hear much sound
without my aids. I search and finally find
new batteries: the wind becomes a roar!
I quickly dial them down from music to
a conversation: whistles, whines and more
now wind around our house. The clouds race to
go there from here, and here from there. I see
the colors change from white to grey. The snow
begins to fall and white returns in swirls. The ice
forms on the twigs–the trees begin to know
they’re in a struggle with the wind. They try
to bend, and hope the promise was a lie.

– Verse “The Promise of a Storm” – Steve Shoemaker, Urbana, IL, Feb. 22, 2013