I'm here by myself this year. Although the two weeks allotted to us to have this house start a week later than last year, the other sisters can't come until next week. And the numbers are dwindling; more and more of them can't do the steps.
Only child that I am, I have never minded a few days alone. I am immersed in several disparate things: preparing my panel talk on Stevie Smith's poem "Pretty," binge-watching the Netflix video "The Keepers," walking all over town, sleeping, and , of course, birding.
Yesterday I saw a female Canada Warbler foraging in the hedges at the State Park's Nature Trail.
I couldn't even begin to photograph her, but here is a photo by someone else:
I'm not sure if I've ever seen one in real life before. If I have, it has not been for a very long time.
The rain and fog have finally left, and here is the view yesterday:
I took the photo below of the bare tree that I call my "Merlin Tree" Last October while I was just standing still on the trail below, a Merlin flew in, landed on one of those bare branches, and lingered.
It felt like a visitation.
Stevie Smith's poems have also reminded me of a modernist Emily Dickinson, which then reminded me of one of Dickinson's poem that I set to music back when I was a sophomore in college. I can still hear it in my mind:
I DIED for beauty, but was scarce
Adjusted in the tomb,
When one who died for truth was lain
In an adjoining room.
He questioned softly why I failed? 5
“For beauty,” I replied.
“And I for truth,—the two are one;
We brethren are,” he said.
And so, as kinsmen met a night,
We talked between the rooms, 10
Until the moss had reached our lips,
And covered up our names.