Wednesday, May 1, 2013

the silver bell


Wood Thrush. Photo by Steve Maslowski, US Fish and Wildlife Service


“The leaves through which the glad winds blew
Shared. The wild dance the waters knew;
And where the shadows deepest fell
The wood-thrush rang his silver bell.”

(From “The Seeking of the Waterfall” by John Greenleaf Whittier (1807-1892) Quaker poet and ardent advocate of the abolition of slavery. Whittier was one of the “Fireside Poets,” a group of New England poets that also included Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, William Cullen Bryant, James Russell Lowell and Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. They were the first American poets whose popularity rivaled that of British poets on both sides of the Atlantic.)

Rejoice! Such absolute beauty. The “silver bell” of the wood thrush has returned to the woods behind my home. Although honestly, Mr. Greenleaf, their song sounds more like a feathered flute to me. Que sera, sera.


8 comments:

500Jerk said...

Thanks for the poetry.

That's a beautiful photo. What kind of camera do you use?

Aby, The confused soul. said...

“The leaves through which the glad winds blew
Shared. The wild dance the waters knew;
And where the shadows deepest fell
The wood-thrush rang his silver bell.”

Wow nice peace of poetry, I wish I would have read it in the morning B'coz it's so fresh and soothing... unluckily it's night here and I'm about to go to bed. Nice post as always

henry said...

Beautiful picture of a thrush, sir. Up here in urban Eastern Ontario we're making do with redwing blackbirds and robins at present. And the song of the former has a certain rusty-gate-hinge quality, rather than the fluted call of the thrush that you eloquently describe.

Vickie said...

Thanks for the heads up. I haven't heard ours sing yet. I'll be listening in the morning!

Stephen Lyn Bales said...

Hello Henry. It's good to hear from you.

Do you get wood thrush in your part of Ontario? I checked their range map and although they do nest in Eastern Ontario, they do not venture too far north into your province.

Yes. Good description of a red-winged blackbird. Their voice is quite rusty.

Enjoy your day.

Stephen Lyn Bales said...

Hello Aby.

Well at least it gave you something pleasant to think about as you drifted off to sleep.

To hear what the wood thrush sounds like, go to: http://www.learnbirdsongs.com/birdsong.php?id=32

Stephen Lyn Bales said...

Good morning Vickie.

Yes, now I know it's officially spring, the wood thrush have returned.

Stephen Lyn Bales said...

Hello 500jerk.

I read how you got your name on your profile. Oh so funny. 500jerk does sound like a mighty oath!

Thanks for visiting. I take most of my photos using a Canon EOS Digital Rebel. But the problem is, I do not have a long enough lens to really sneak up on most birds, so I did not take the wood thrush photo. Instead, it was taken by an employee of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service while he was on duty. And since he is a government employee, paid, in effect, by taxpayers, the photo is in public domain. And isn't it quite a photo!

Thanks for visiting.