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Draw a Bird Day: Nightingale

nightingale 1s

I follow you
into the dark crescendo
of sleepless nights

nightingale 2s

I was inspired to draw a nightingale by Rose Ausländer’s beautiful elegy, “My Nightingale”.

Once upon a time my mother was a doe.
The gold- brown eyes
the grace
stayed with her from the doe-time.

Here she was
half angel half human –
the middle was Mother.
When I asked her what she would have wanted to be
she said: a nightingale.

Now she is a nightingale.
Night after night I hear her
in the garden of my sleepless dream.
She is singing the Zion of the ancestors
she is singing the long-ago Austria
she is singing the mountains and beech
forests of Bukowina.
Cradle songs
my nightingale
sings to me night after night
in the garden of my sleepless dream.

 

Once again, Draw a Bird Day is holding the fort at memadtwo, hoping Nina will be back soon.

Asian Dwarf Kingfisher (Draw a Bird Day)

dwarf kingfisher blk s

tiny wings perch, still–
suddenly swoop downward, flash
trail of jeweled light

tiny wings
sudden swoop trails flash
jeweled light

wings flash
suddenly
jewels

It’s the 8th of the month again!  Draw a Bird Day, and Poet’s Choice for Colleen’s #TankaTuesday.  This month I’ve taken my haiku and reduced it twice.  This is a good exercise for any poem I find.

dwarf kingfisher wht 2s

I chose to draw the Asian Dwarf Kingfisher this month because of its colors.  It’s a tiny bird–5″–one of 114 species of kingfishers.  I did not realize this species was so large and varied.  All nest in burrows and hunt by swooping down from a perched position.  Many hunt fish–that was my impression of them–but may also, like the dwarf kingfisher, eat insects, earthworms, and small amphibians.

Dwarf kingfishers, like many birds, are under threat of extinction due to loss of habitat.  Their main predators are foxes, raccoons, and snakes.

dwarf kingfisher wht 1s

Nina gave me the set of brush markers that I used experimentally in doing the last 2 drawings (the one on black was done in colored pencil).  I am still trying to convince her to start posting again.  She’s been doing some painting…maybe by next Draw a Bird Day.  In the meantime, you can find me most of the time at https://kblog.blog/.

Draw a Bird Day: Seagull

seagull 3s

voices in waves
sea calling gathering in
cadenced desire

Seagulls and pigeons are the main birds I see from my window.  But I hear robins every morning, and crows have started to visit the neighboring roofs as well.

This is a multiple poem posting for both Colleen’s #TankaTuesday (poet’s choice of words) and Frank Tassone’s “#Haikai Challenge #133 (twittering).  Seagulls do not twitter, so I wrote the lines above.

seagull 1s

I’ve been wanting to try a gogyoka, so for that I put in a little twittering.

sky wakes
with birds twittering dawn
stirring clouds
scattering colors
across each uncharted day

seagull 2s

Once again I’m posting for Draw a Bird Day as a place keeper for MeMadTwo until Nina gets back.  I’m doing NaPoWriMo at https://kblog.blog/

Black Cockatoo (draw a bird day)

black cockatoo scan s

rain magic magnetic

I wanted to at least keep Draw-a-Bird-Day going for Nina and me, even if we’re both absent from WordPress at the moment.  This is an old drawing that I never posted, but it seemed appropriate in many ways for the way the world feels right now.

Black Cockatoos are native to Australia and the surrounding islands, and were already facing habitat loss before the fires.  They are highly social and intelligent birds, but they also have mythical and cultural associations.  Symbols of change, spiritual freedom, communication, and survival, they are traditionally called on for their rain magic.  Black birds in general hold the secrets of alchemy, mystery, and transformation.  Our earth is crying out for all these things.

earth needs rain magic
to cleanse despair’s inferno
breathe flowers like stars

I also want to note that when you google “cockatoo” most of the links are about keeping them as pets.  Confinement and separation are not a natural or desirable existence for these beautiful creatures, and they can easily become destructive, depressed, and needy without constant attention and the freedom to wander and socialize in large flocks that is their normal way of life.

 

Cedar Waxwing (Draw-a-Bird Day)

cedar waxwing s

masked harlequin, air
dancer, choreographer
of parallel flight–

what secrets hold the patterns
of your synchronicity?

I chose the cedar waxwing for my bird this month because of its beautiful and varied coloration.  I wanted to do some drawing with my neocolors, blending difference shades to create multicolored effects.

I drew the bird paired, because waxwings are social birds, and often exhibit food-sharing behavior, as well as other complex rituals including the synchronized flight of large flocks.  They are native to North and Central America, and migrate in unpredictable patterns that follow berries and other sweet fruit, their main dietary source.  They like sugar so much they can get drunk from gorging on plentiful supplies of fruit.  They also eat insects.

Although the information I read said they are not often seen alone, I did come across a single waxwing on a tree by the path where I was walking near my brother’s house in North Carolina a few years ago.  They are distinctive and beautiful birds.

I also wanted to note that I have 3 pieces of art in The Raw Art Review Summer 2019.  You can see it here; the reblog would not work.

Once again, Draw a Bird Day, the 8th of each month, is serving as a placeholder here at MeMadTwo while Nina takes an extended break. I’m hoping she’ll be back in 2020.  In the meantime, you can find me (Kerfe) at https://kblog.blog/.

 

Draw a Bird Day: Short-eared Owl

flying owl photo s

following behind–
owl-shadow, like a prism
scattering the dark

I did a few of these brush-painted flying owls and all of them looked very fishlike to me.  I usually think of owls as catlike, but in air they swim.  Short-eared owls in flight are described as “moth-like”.

pencil owl photo s

Short-eared owls have wide distribution, occurring on all continents except Australia and Antarctica.  The map I saw for North America showed wide declines in coastal populations due to loss of habitat, although those in the center of the United States and Canada seemed stable.

owl color photo s

They eat mainly rodents, and are in turn food for raptors and larger mammals because they nest on the ground.  Most active from dusk through dawn, they fly low over fields looking for prey.

Also for Colleen’s #TankaTuesday poet’s choice of words.  It’s becoming a regular for Draw-a-Bird Day.

Once again, Draw a Bird Day, the 8th of each month, is serving as a placeholder here at MeMadTwo while Nina takes an extended break.  I’m missing her, aren’t you?

In the meantime, you can find me (Kerfe) at https://kblog.blog/.

 

Draw a Bird Day: Golden Winged Warbler

golden warbler 2s

tiny wanderer–
shrinking woodlands, flash of gold–
following your voice

The golden winged warbler is a tiny (5″) bird that is among the most endangered on a long list of endangered birds.  The population has been reduced by 2/3 in the last 50 years, mostly due to habitat loss in both breeding grounds (the largest population breeds in Michigan) and wintering habitat (in Central and South America–a long migration away).  They are shy, but vocal.

Once again, Draw a Bird Day, the 8th of each month, is serving as a placeholder here at MeMadTwo while Nina takes an extended break.  Come back soon Nina!

In the meantime, you can find me (Kerfe) at https://kblog.blog/.

 

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

 

Kerfe (version 2)

Not to brag but I think this might be one of my best portraits. This caught something of my friend Kerfe. Like I’ve said before Kerfe is aging very well. She still looks like the knit designer I met at Fairtex Mills all those many years ago.

I guess it’s her good bone structure.

Kerfe, I hope you like this one.

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.