Salutatory, by Anne Coray

I subscribe to a birding list serve and for all the years I’ve been on it, my favourite quote ever happened today.

“On N.Quarry road there was a chickadee singing Cheeseburger, which struck me (figuratively).”

Hahahaha…here’s a poem.


For all the small birds,
chickadees, juncos, swallows,
and the tiny warbler and the sparrow —
friends, with whom I have grown
out of loneliness, as I tend
the garden or gather wood:

I am thankful for your presence,
for the psalm of your taut bodies,
your wings, the words,
your flight, their syllable’s
swift echo.

You offer things that cannot
be given, only lent:
a sideways look, a dance,
as you hop from branch to branch,
flashing white and black,
and yellow and blue.

And though I know you are not here
for me, nor I for you, I think
proximity has its own calling:
we share these paths
and this pebbled beach as equals,
fragile creatures, versed
in all that is temporal
and dear in the world.
– Anne Coray


4 thoughts on “Salutatory, by Anne Coray

  1. I’m always amused by the phonetics of bird calls in bird books – the ‘kek’, the ‘kip’, the ‘tseep’, the ‘wichity’ – and in the case of the black-whiskered vireo in the Bahamas, the ‘cheap-John-stirrup-sweet-Joe-clear’! Very often the birds sound nothing like these to me, and maybe even as banal as the memorable ‘cheeseburger’! RH

    • Hehehe, yes there are plenty of good ones! I like the “Pleased, pleased, pleased to meetcha!” and “Lookin for me? Over here!” or “Sweet canada canada canada” or “Sweet, sweet, I’m so sweet!” *gasp* I should do a post on it!!

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