Birding Notes

Reflections on birds and other wildlife on the edge of a southern woodland

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

April Showers and Songs of Farewell

Today was a cool, gray, rainy day. April showers seemed to turn the trees green and greener as they fell. Through a misty gray fog in late afternoon came the sweet, sad songs of White-throated Sparrows. Although their songs are usually described as sounding like “Old Sam Peabody,” or sometimes as, “O sweet Canada,” to me they seem to be saying something much more romantic.

White-throated Sparrows are here in the South only for the winter, so at this time of year they’re getting ready to leave, and when they sing, especially at twilight or in rainy, moody weather, it sounds to me as if they’re singing, “Come a-way with me.” Their songs are the perfect expressions of sad and reluctant, but inevitable, partings, and of time and the seasons moving on, no matter how much we might wish they could linger.

Of course, this has everything to do with my point of view and nothing to do with theirs – I’m the one staying here, while they fly away.


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