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Draw-a-Bird Day: short crested coquette

short crested coquette paint s

hummingbird magnetic

I consulted with the Oracle about this tiny (3″) Mexican hummingbird, one of many of the endangered bird species of the world.  Less than 1000 are estimated to exist.

short crested coquette pencil s

I did my first sketch, above, in colored pencil, but felt the colors lacked enough vibrancy, so I painted the top one with my metallic watercolors.

Flowers grow feathered
wings humming bird poetry
air breathes spiritsong

 

Draw a Bird Day: sheltered by shadows

mountain toucan s

jeweled feathers caught
in reflected mist—cloistered
chiaroscuro

This is another brightly colored resident of the South American cloud forest, the grey-breasted mountain toucan.  As with all inhabitants of the world’s cloud forests, they are a threatened species because of habitat loss.

mountain toucan close up s

Drawn with neocolors.

 

Crow Takes My Hand

crow tree s

Crow calls to me from above. There he is—on that roof.  He extends his invitation again and again.

leave sidewalks behind–
rise, and conjure golden fields
waving to azure

skies filled with high flying clouds,
wings singing songs into the air

I know there is magic here, even in places filled with concrete and glass.

Holding out my arms, I wish: carry me home.

watching my child-self
lying in a bed of green–
opened up, shining

crow tree close up s

For NaPoWriMo today, we are talking to animals.  Crow is always hanging around in my world.

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Draw a Bird: Peacock

As usual I saw Kerfe’s post and remembered Draw a Bird. Seeing many low swooping hawks in the area. Majestic creatures, birds.

on the possibility of seeing a painted bunting (draw a bird day)

painted bunting s

caught like a
shadow just beyond
the watching
eye, barely
imprinted on the synapse
of remembering

it flies on
the winds of held breath–
covering the
air with blurs
of moving feathers, colors
surrounded by song

My NaPoWriMo poem today has nothing to do with the prompt, and everything to do with it being the 8th of April, which is National Draw-a-Bird-Day.  I have never actually seen a painted bunting, but I have painted this bird before, in 2015, when one was spotted in Brooklyn.  This version was done with a new set of watercolor pencils I received for my birthday earlier this year.

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We are doing nothing,

We are doing nothing s

and yet we
shout, we run through skies
like fire.  Where
do we live?
Our voices surround the trees,
our dances timeless.

We are deep,
endless, uncontained,
always and
everywhere.
We entwine with movements, with
stillness, with the air,

like leaves
that grow green and then
release themselves,
singing in
the wind.  We fall apart and
return completed.

We have no
surfaces, no years
to count or
give away.
We laugh like creatures with wings
scattering clear light.

Our form is
unmeasured.  We speak
in no know
tongue.  Alive,
we need no reason.  No one
can tell you our names.

we are close up 2s

NaPoWriMo has asked us to spread joy today.

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Take These Broken Wings

there's a crow flying #2

Curse not the king, no, not even in thy thoughts, and curse not the rich in thy bedchamber; for a bird of the air shall carry thy voice, and that which hath wings shall tell the matter.
–Ecclesiastes 10:20

Among twenty snowy mountains,
The only moving thing
Was the eye of the blackbird.
–Wallace Stevens, “Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird”

apolcalyptic crows wht s

That which hath wings shall tell
(blackbird whirling in the autumn winds)
The birth of the sky, the void in the flow

Three minds like a tree in parallel
(rising in blueness, the mystery twinned)
That which hath wings shall tell

Blackbirds are involved in what I know
(how to release and how to begin)
The birth of the sky, the void in the flow

A man and a woman are one distilled
(diving divining reflected and twinned)
That which hath wings shall tell

The river is moving in flying shadow
(the question unseen that I can’t comprehend)
The birth of the sky, the void in the flow

Imagine these golden birds aglow
(the crow and the tree and the origin’s end)
That which hath wings shall tell
The birth of the sky, the void in the flow

There's a crow flying # if I flew

For the NaPoWriMo prompt, a villanelle with lines taken from an outside text.  I’ve used both of these poetic sources before; you can see examples here and here.  To the words of Stevens and the Bible, I added text from one of my many crow poems, and art selected from my many pieces inspired by crows.

And since dVerse is conveniently featuring the villanelle form this month, I’ve linked to the collection of villanelle poems.

spiral crows 2s

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April 2019

april 19 grid s

morning wakes
me at first light as
my mother
used to do,
but not with words—birdchoir sings
through me:  “rise and shine!”

april grid close up 3s

My mother did not believe in sleeping in…when she decided it was time to get up, even on non-school days, she would waltz in, open the blinds, and announce, “Rise and Shine!”  One of the delights of spring for me is that my alarm is the light and the birds (I never close my blinds)–but I always hear my mother’s voice joining the chorus.

april grid close up 2s

I worked on my monthly grid all week, waiting for the NaPoWriMo prompt to do the accompanying poem.  This is not really a recipe, but I think it’s close enough.  The grid was inspired by numerous photos of tulip festivals from all over the world…rows and rows of beautiful color.  April!

Fields of Dreams

jackie robinson 1s text

A haiga for Colleen’s tanka Tuesday words, hobby and play.  There is a long tradition of baseball haiku, both in Japan and America.

jackie robinson 2s

 I first thought of Rickey Henderson when I considered sketching a base stealer, but then I discovered that Jackie Robinson was the major league leader in steals of home in the modern era–he did it 19 times–so I used photos of him as my inspiration.  Just one small part of his extraordinary legacy.

sliding home s text

This second haiga is for Frank Tassone’s challenge of swallows.  When Ken at rivrvlogr posted his response, it reminded me that the place I see swallows in NYC is at the ball park–clearly stadiums have good nesting places.  And always plenty of dreams.

I’m definitely out of practice with my sketching, and I forgot how difficult it is to draw catchers.  But Opening Day is just around the corner…

harbinger

harbinger blk s

the blue of
darkness is
a blank canvas

from translucent music
comes
the shadow
of hope

moonbird rising
toward
the center of deep
light

It took me a long time to see the hat in Sue Vincent’s photo prompt, above–to my eyes the form on the sign was a magical creature, perched on the threshold.  So I just went with it.

harbinger close up s

The collage box Oracle knows what the world needs now…