now, just mary oliver, enough.

WHAT GORGEOUS THING

I do not know what gorgeous thing

the bluebird keeps saying,

his voice easing out of his throat,

beak, body into the pink air

of the early morning.  I like it

whatever it is.  Sometimes

it seems the only thing in the world

that is without dark thoughts.

Sometimes it seems the only thing

in the world that is without

questions that can’t and probably

never will be answered, the

only thing that is entirely content

with the pink, then clear white

morning and gratefully, says so.

Mary Oliver– Blue Horsesmary oliver

right now :: birdhouses

IMGP0658I was awakened by birdsong this morning. Delicious crisp and cheerful birdsong. That accompanied by the sound of the creek flowing and gurgling and bubbling past the house was not a bad way to greet the morning, I’ll say. The grass is really beginning to green up now. The mud isn’t quite so gushy (well, until the next round of rain settles in, that is) and the little forest birds and meadow birds are beginning to arrive from distant places. A few days ago, the Louisiana water thrush made its voice heard for the first time this spring. We mark their arrival on our calendar as each day marches us closer to spring.IMGP0630IMGP0637With all of the bird activity, and with a couple of gorgeous sun-filled days, Eric and his dad (Pap Pap) along with the helping hands of the children, set to making some sweet new homes for our feathered friends. Throughout the winter months, as we are cutting firewood,  Eric will set aside hollow sections of logs for the very purpose of making birdhouses. We seem to be making this an annual tradition and add to our collection of birdie-homes all over the farm each spring… when our friends are eagerly searching out suitable nesting spots. Eric had just finished building a new mineral feeder for the livestock so all of his tools were already easily accessible… and then the weather was just so nice and the birds were singing so brightly… it just seemed the perfect time for this project to happen. Now we can’t wait to see the vacant little houses become occupied with bird families!IMGP0660

inevitable

IMGP0566Just as it was getting light this morning, Ira got suited up, grabbed his gun, and left to go squirrel hunting. There’s only a few more days of squirrel season left, but I think the child has shot 56 squirrels so far. Admittedly, I won’t be sad when the season ends as we have eaten so. many. squirrels. They taste fabulous, don’t get me wrong. And I am proud of him for always cleaning them with care and relish seeing how proud he is when we sit down to a meal that he harvested and often prepared all by himself. But I have strange moments of wondering when the natural balance in the squirrel population could be upset… or when hungry squirrel-eating hawks decide to pay a visit to our chicken paddock when they find tree-dwelling rodents are in short supply. Hmmmm.IMGP0594It was 12 degrees this morning. The cold weather doesn’t seem to bother Ira much, he refuses long underwear (well, any underwear for that matter) but he has actually taken to wearing socks with his rubber boots. If you know Ira, that is quite a revelation. When he returned from his hunt and set in giving Papa his report (again, if you know Ira, you also know that he always always has something to say.) he said it felt like a summer morning. Summer. He has a particular keenness for birds and pays attention to what they have to say. Apparently, this morning the birds’ chatter, and gobblers calling in the distance, alerted his brain to the fact that change is in the air. The inevitable change that happens when winter gives way to spring. And spring to summer, for that matter. And it is inevitable, too. The change. There is no stopping it. Even though there is still snow on the ground. Even though more snow could be falling this evening. Spring’s return is inevitable. And I’ll be glad for it.IMGP0504