Posted in Life, music

I love the sound of the birds

Photo by Sreenivas on Unsplash

I hear their singing before the sky begins to lighten. The birds are awake, welcoming the dawn. I love to hear their voices.

Their song is joyful. Some people hate the morning. But obviously the birds love it. It’s like they couldn’t wait for the faintest brightness on the horizon to start singing.

I feel joy when I hear their song. Maybe that’s part of the reason I love the morning so much. I don’t know why they are singing. I don’t know what they are singing about. I don’t recognize the tune. But they sing it over and over again, and each time they do, it makes me feel good. It reaches a place in my head that releases some kind of happiness into my soul.

Some of the songs are so simple. A single note, over and over again. Some songs are choruses repeated again and again. Some melodies are complex. When I’m out on a walk, I’ll sometimes whistle to imitate a bird song. I’m not very good at it. But as we go back and forth, their joy becomes mine. Whether it’s true or not, I like to think we’ve got a little conversation going. I know, they are probably thinking, “You’re not a bird.” Just like the cows I moo at who chuckle in their heads, “Does he think he sounds like a cow?” If the owls haven’t yet gone to bed, I’ll hear them talking from one stand of trees to another. I’ll add my “hoo-hoo-hoo-hooo” to the conversation. I don’t think I’ve ever fooled them, though.

Their song is hopeful. Most bird song sounds optimistic to me. Somehow their song says, “It’s going to be a great day!” Even the doves, whose “whoo” sounds mournful, do it in a positive way. It’s a new day. It’s filled with possibilities. The birds just can’t help but sing about it.

From their vantage point, either up in a tree or flying in the air, they probably see the first rays of the rising sun before I do. Their song announces another chance to both live and love. No matter what happened yesterday, I’ve got another chance today. I’ve got a chance to do it better or a chance to keep up the good work.

Their song is alive. Creation was pretty quiet until God spoke and birds filled the sky. Suddenly, there were sounds above the trees and seas. Hawks screamed as they glided overhead. Crows cawed. The staccato brraattt of a woodpecker working on a tree filled the air. Ducks and geese added their quacks and honks. The creative voice of God made this world a noisy place!

That last paragraph reminded me of all the words we’ve created to describe the sounds of the birds. Tweet. Chirp. Squawk. Peep. Cock-a-doodle-doo. The land, water, and air are alive with the songs and sounds of birds, and I’m alive, too.

Posted in Nature

Wood Stork

Either I’m becoming more observant, or new birds are suddenly in my field of vision. Today, simply walking Samson, we saw a few of these:

A Wood Stork is the only stork native to North America. They slowly stalk but quickly snap up fish, frogs and whatever else they can find in swamps, ponds and today, roadside ditches. nominates them for “ugliest bird,” but I think that’s a bit harsh. The eating must have been good today, since this one hardly looked up when I paused to take his (and his friend’s) picture.

Posted in Ministry

Pileated Woodpecker

I was sitting out back a few days ago when I heard this repetitive pop, pop, pop, pop above my head. When I looked up into the trees in the lot next to my house, I saw a few woodpeckers hard at work on a tall pine tree. I had seen a pile of bark at the base of the tree, but hadn’t yet put two and two together. This tree was dead and filled with bugs, a wonderful buffet for the woodpeckers. This tree also needed to be reported to the city, too close to my house for comfort.

This bird appears to be a female Pileated Woodpecker. Crow-sized, she has the triangulate crest on the top of her head but I don’t see the red cheek stripe of the male. These woodpeckers like large, standing dead trees, in which they can drill for carpenter ants and other insects.