Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Meadow Mist: No Ghost, But Geese

The other day when I was “out and about” (read: birding) I ventured into my meadow—it was a gloriously misty day, and I was hoping to see the Grey Ghost in there, silver wings against the silver mist.

No luck with the Harrier, but there was a nice flock of Canada Geese moving about, their cries mysteriously disembodied in the mist. And their silvery-dun-black-white bodies (actually very similar in palette to the Harrier) suited my frame of my mind.


Their color seems to change as they move through the air, as seen against the corn stubble, their companions, the trees, and and sky; their plumage seems to take on the color of the bark of trees.

Thoreau: “How indispensable our one or two flocks of geese in spring and autumn ! What would be a spring in which that sound was not heard? Coming to unlock the fetters of northern rivers.” (Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), Journal, April 15, 1852.)

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