(sketch by Patty who in trying to lead the wide-awake life found herself inspired by this poem by Ronnie, fellow birder.)

In Praise of My Hermit Thrush

You scratch and peck below that scrubby bush.

Busy squirrels ignore your presence.

Their focus is on acorns; lunch for the cold winter months.

You’ve got my attention.

My brain ticks off your features:

brown above with snowy breast,

glitzed with black polka dots at the throat.

And there’s the telltale rufous- colored tail

ready to bob just like my trusty bird book says.

Those dark hazel eyes stare and

I stare back; I can’t believe you’re here.

Poets write of the sweetness of your song

that rises in the still of twilight time.

I know that you won’t sing for me today.

That’s too much to ask.

Your lowered tail announces your good bye.

I’ll miss you, my sweet little anchorite.

Thanks for showing up at my backyard door.

VRS   1-18-2013

The Hermit Thrushes we saw this week were Just Sitting and doing that genteel tail bob. (Erase all the green and replace it with white and the picture is very accurate…!)

In the Spring we hear the Hermit Thrush and the Veery in our back woods exactly as it’s pictured here in this youTube. (Hurrah for youTube!!)

And he’s a better musician than many of us!!

7 thoughts on “In Praise of My Hermit Thrush: A poem by Veronica, otherwise known by the birders (and WWWW, as Ronnie). Move over James Audubon.

    1. You’re leading the wide-awake life! Ronnie’s poetry is pretty astounding. I notice that WWWW published
      this particular poem of her’s earlier on in our history. Well. Time for a rebroadcast, especially since we saw 4 Hermit Thrushes on Wednesday, a cold day when many other avian beings stayed in their cavities or hidden in the deep brush and brambles.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. It’s funny, I recently read an excerpt from Audubon’s “Ornithological Biographies”, and this poem really captures the admiration for the birds’ beauty. I especially liked the two lines, “Those dark hazel eyes stare and / I stare back; I can’t believe you’re here.” They remind me a bit of Annie Dillard’s “Living Like Weasels.”


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