Here’s my fourth warbler this week, the Magnolia warbler. In the photo he’s a speck and a bit of a fuzzy one at that, but let me tell you the story about why these photos make me so happy.
Once, about seven years ago, I went out with a group of experienced birders to find migrating warblers. I had no idea what this would be like. (Mind you, seven years ago, I wasn’t quite as hardy as I am today.) On that spring morning, person after person called out the names of warblers. They named them by song. They found them in the trees. They counted them out, one by one, by one, lots of them.
I saw nothing. I heard nothing. I found nothing, no matter how people near me tried to help. On that morning I faded away and soon left in tears.
I haven’t really thought about that experience since then--until now. To have these illusive little birds come visit me in my yard, to find them almost effortlessly and to identify them with these fuzzy photos while looking in my field guide—this gives me great joy. It’s as though they hurt my feelings on that day and have come by to mend them. And that makes me laugh.They are beautiful. And they are funny. And they travel thousands of miles against great odds to return to their breeding grounds in the spring. We are so very lucky to have them. --I think I may have to paint them one day soon.
For the Love of It...
...the sage sees heaven reflected in Nature as in a mirror, and he pursues this Art, not for the sake of gold or silver, but for the love of the knowledge which it reveals.