Except for a recent enchantment by Andrew Zuckerman’s avian photography, I am not particularly interested in the feathered world, but this collection has the winning aspect of a wide array of poets from Geoffrey Chaucer to Henry David Thoreau, Elizabeth Bishop to Wallace Stevenswhose contribution I particularly enjoyed:
Thirteen Ways of Looking at a BlackbirdThe complete poem is available here. And as is in evidence in this tome’s wide spectrum of image and metaphor, there is for poets something liberating and inspired as they behold nature’s winged creatures.
Among twenty snowy mountains,
The only moving thing
Was the eye of the blackbird.
I was of three minds,
Like a tree
In which there are three blackbirds.
The blackbird whirled in the autumn winds.
It was a small part of the pantomime.
A man and a woman
A man and a woman and a blackbird
I do not know which to prefer,
The beauty of inflections
Or the beauty of innuendoes,
The blackbird whistling
Or just after.