Have you ever heard or read that poem by Emily Dickinson, about hope and feathers? It is one of my favorites.
I sit here with Abi on the right side of me and Charlie on the left, always their pattern, and listen to the daytime sounds outside.
The sound of distant traffic, muted though only a block away. The sounds of the birds out in the front bushes.
Robins are everywhere. On the roof behind me, perched on the privacy fence, hopping along my patio. Suddenly there are so many of them.
So I decided to do some digging into the habits of robins and here’s what I found:
- Robins migrate more in response to food than to temperature. Fruit is the robin’s winter food source. As the ground thaws in the spring, they switch to earthworms and insects. While the robins may arrive when temperatures reach 37 degrees, this is because their food becomes available not because the robins themselves need warm temperatures.
- Robins wander in the winter: Temperatures get colder as winter progresses. Robins need more food when it’s cold and more and more of the fruit gets eaten. Robins move here and there in response to diminishing food supplies and harsh weather.
So I guess that mystery is solved. They are here eating the same berries the squirrels stand on my fence and eat from the tree branches that reach into my yard in the corner.
The same tree that has the fragrant white flowers in the springtime.
This is my sole nod to Valentine’s Day. And that’s only because when I was cleaning out the closet I came across these heart stems. On a whim I poked a few into this plant.
I’ve never really decorated for Valentine’s Day. It just kind of passes me by without much thought. I guess I’m not a romantic.
No, nature is my focus year round. I pay more attention to the seasons than I do to holidays. I’d rather watch the birds and squirrels and cycling seasonal changes.
Just look at this blue beauty. All the various shades of blue feathers fascinate me. It is like staring at the colors in a crayon box to watch the outdoor birds.
Feast your eyes on the back of this blue jay. The blues and blacks intermingling. The feathers somewhat fanned out in the cold. Beautiful.
I am reading “The Hope Chest.”
The discovery of one woman’s heirloom hope chest unveils precious memories and helps three people who have each lost a part of themselves find joy once again.
Ever since she was diagnosed with ALS, fiercely independent Mattie doesn’t feel like herself. She can’t navigate her beloved home, she can’t go for a boat ride, and she can barely even feed herself.
Her devoted husband, Don, doesn’t want to imagine life without his wife of nearly fifty years, but Mattie isn’t likely to make it past their anniversary.
A delivery man just knocked on the door and I signed for this book:
A few minutes after 9 p.m. on Palm Sunday, April 5, 1936, a massive funnel cloud flashing a giant fireball and roaring like a runaway train careened into the thriving cotton-mill town of Tupelo, Mississippi.
It killed more than 200 people, not counting an unknown number of black citizens. One-third of Tupelo’s population, therefore, were not included in the official casualty figures.
When the tornado hits, Dovey, a local laundress, is flung by the terrifying winds into a nearby lake. Bruised and nearly drowned, she makes her way across Tupelo to find her small family.
Her hardworking husband, Virgil, her clever sixteen-year-old granddaughter, Dreama, and Promise, Dreama’s beautiful light-skinned three-month-old son.
I have been reading 3-4 books per week at night lately. When spring arrives and I’m working outside, I probably won’t be doing quite as much reading.
As I was writing this post, one of my favorite poems, by Emily Dickinson, came to mind: