It’s lovely to think, had I lived in Concord, I might have strolled with Henry round his pond, met the creatures who enlivened his Walden days and nights.
This is a new poem, triggered by my umpteenth reading of Walden. What a treat it is to plaster and build fires and fish and stride with Henry, far from the hurly burly and gossip he decries, while all the world seems to be swarming into and through malls…
Henry, in his Walden haven,
“my hens and chickens”
praising serene eyes
— open yet filled
“with wisdom clarified by experience”
in his outstretched human hand
insisting partridge eyes
were “not born when the bird was”
but are “coeval with sky”
to partridge “mewings”
consorts with otter
“big as a small boy”
heading for a summer spring
–cooler than his pond
Henry is ringed and ringed
by the maternal woodcock
pretending broken wing
if we could follow his instructions:
“You only need sit still
CAROLYN FOOTE EDELMANN
December 6, 2014
It’s interesting, in this time of gifts and cards, to attempt to define true friendship.
Right now, true friendship is conveyed by people I slightly know and barely ever see. Ray Yeager, who sends his newest snowy owl, frisking fox, from Holgate, from Island Beach.
And Warren Liebensperger, “Godfather of the Marsh,” who called last night with the current bird list from the (Hamilton Trenton Bordentown) Abbott Marshlands:
American black ducks
American wigeon (this used to be spelled with a ‘d’ and always looks wrong to me)
a lot of coots!
Most of these birds were to the right as you walk into the Abbott Marshlands off Sewell Avenue. According to Warren, there was “nothing in Spring Lake.” The lake never looked right all summer and fall, choked with insect-riddled yellowing leaves. I wonder if its ph has changed or what that makes it inhospitable to winter waterfowl.
Warren then, clearly disappointed by the emptiness of the lake, gave me his (near-Marsh) yard bird list:
marsh wrens, which “they like to call winter wren”
kinglets, mostly golden-crowned
of course, the juncoes are here
THANK YOU, PROFOUNDLY, RAY AND WARREN, for our friendship, and yours, with the wild creatures.