One Song

After Rumi

A cardinal, the very essence of red, stabs
the hedgerow with his piercing notes;
a chickadee adds three short beats,
part of the percussion section, and a white-
throated sparrow moves the melody along.
Last night, at a concert, crashing waves
of Prokofiev; later, the soft rain falling
steadily and a train whistle off in the distance.
And today, the sun, waiting for its cue,
comes out from the clouds for a short sweet
solo, then sits back down, rests between turns.
On the other side of the world, night’s black
bass fiddle rosins its bow, draws it over
the strings, resonates with the breath
of sleepers, animal, vegetable, human.
All the world breathes in, breathes out.
It hums, it throbs, it improvises.  So many voices.
Only one song.

-Barbara Crooker

Here’s a video from Britain that provides a lovely audiovisual accompaniment:

Bird Sounds

8 thoughts on “One Song

  1. One of the things I would like to do in my lifetime is to join a Bird Club in order to be able to go out with like-minded people to identify birds by sight and sound. For now I settle for my backyard friends and videos and sound dvds.
    This morning we spotted a sharp-shinned hawk sitting on a log in the spinney behind my house. He did not bother the beautiful cardinals at the feeder…I was keeping a watch on him!


  2. Lovely poem. I enjoyed the video even if the birds were not ones we know. Well, maybe the Chickadee. ( I didn’t watch all 8 hours though.)


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