Sunday, January 18, 2009
haze, sounds, cruel
Mist, tree and sun.
Of all the sounds I hear in the garden and in the road passing the house the alarm call of the blackbird - the urgent, repititive single note that it makes as it flees the approach of a human or a cat - is the one I notice the most. It is a sound so different from its fluent song of spring and summer, that you are surprised to find that it has the same source. Blackbirds are common round here; we live side by side; and I am not surprised to find that their priorities are often quite close to my own.
The photograph and lines from a poem - "nothing as beautiful as birds could be so cruel and fearful as they are" - which Lucy Kempton published in Box Elder the other day, stay in my mind. The photograph is hers; the lines are from a poem by another blogger, Christopher, http://northernwall.blogspot.com , a poet and mechanical designer from Gladstone, Oregon. Then, today, when I open at random the notebooks of Albert Camus, a single entry from 1938 catches my eye: L'air est peuplé d'oiseaux cruel et redoutables. It is curious but not surprising that the space in time and geography can be filled by a link between two such powerful images.