Archives For Birds

 

Here are a few new book releases from this week that are worth checking out:

(Where possible, we have also tried to include a review/interview related to the book…)

  

Beren and Lúthien

J.R.R. Tolkien

Read a review from NPR… 

NEXT BOOK >>>>>

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meadowlarks

Today marks the anniversary of the death of poet Sara Teasdale.

Teasdale wrote a surprising number of lovely poems about birds. Here are five of our favorites:

These poems can be found in these two volumes, which are available as FREE Kindle ebooks:

Meadowlarks
Sara Teasdale

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Way More Than is Promised

A Feature Review of

Consider the Birds: A Provocative Guide to Birds of the Bible

Debbie Blue

Paperback: Abingdon, 2013
Buy now:  [ Amazon ]   [ Kindle ]

 

Reviewed by Helen Lee

 

Four years ago, our family hung its first bird feeder, which wasn’t even a real feeder at all. It actually was an empty two-liter soda bottle filled with seeds, onto which I’d attached the simple $5 accessories needed to transform it into a feeder. And I tried to imagine what, if any, actual birds would be drawn to this clunky contraption. But as it’s been said, “if you feed them, they will come.” And did they ever.

 

Black-capped chickadees, to start, but then all manner of sparrows, songbirds, and finches followed, an overflowing of unexpected feathered friends who transformed our drab backyard into an constant source of delight and discovery. And it all began with a humble recycled soda bottle.

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10 Recommended Kindle ebooks for $2.99 or Less!

Prices on these ebooks should not change before June 30, 2012.
But to be on the safe side, please refresh the Amazon page before ordering…



1) Good and Perfect Gift, A: Faith, Expectations, and a Little Girl Named Penny
by Amy Julia Becker  – $2.99  [ Read our Review ]

2) Thin Places: A Memoir
by Mary E. DeMuth  – $2.99  [ Read our Review ]

3) The Locavore Way: Discover and Enjoy the Pleasures of Locally Grown Food
by Amy Cotler – $2.99

4) The Bird Watching Answer Book: Everything You Need to Know to Enjoy Birds in Your Backyard and Beyond
by Laura Erickson – $2.99

5) Nature’s New Deal: The Civilian Conservation Corps and the Roots of the American Environmental Movement
by Neil M. Maher – $2.99

More titles after the jump…

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“Humanity, Engaged in a
Tightly Knit, Interconnected Creation

A review of
Cloud of Ink: Poems
by L.S. Klatt.

Review by Chris Smith.

CLOUD OF INK - L.S. KlattCloud of Ink: Poems
by L.S. Klatt.
Paperback: U of Iowa Press, 2011.
Buy Now:
[ Amazon ] [ Amazon – Kindle ]

L.S. Klatt’s recent collection of poems Cloud of Ink, a winner of the 2010 Iowa Poetry Prize, is a delightful and far-ranging collection of poems that reflects on, and whimsically revels in, humanity’s place in the deeply-interconnected web of nature. Granted, the poems are rarely straightforward and at times plunge into the surreal.  Consider the lines from which the book’s title is drawn, from the poem “Andrew Wyeth, Painter, Dies at 91”:  “A giant squid rises out of the hayfield, &the barn/ is compassed in tentacles/ then a cloud of ink.”  The same poem is also a fine example of Klatt’s mastery at reappropriating lines and images from other work into his poems; Flannery O’Connor, Emerson, Darwin, Audubon, Picasso and Oliver L. Austin, Jr.’s Birds of the World all supply material with which Klatt deftly weaves together his own images, and the above poem’s title was drawn from Wyeth’s obituary in the New York Times.  I imagine, however, that most readers will – like myself – not be able to pinpoint these reused images until they come to the poet’s notes at the end of the volume.  Klatt excels at forging language into rich, multi-layered images that demand that the reader pause, re-read and reflect on their meanings.  It suffices then to say that these poems require some work, they are like paintings in a gallery, which the viewer might gaze upon for hours on end only to discover a minute detail tucked away in a corner that would escape notice of anyone who gave it a mere moment’s glance.

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“What is Enough”
Maureen Doallas

(from the new collection:
Neruda’s Memoirs: Poems by Maureen Doallas,
from TS Poetry Press)

Blessed are they who are thankful,
for they show us what is enough.

Legs twig-thinned, toes splayed,
you balance crumbed morsel
nit-picked ground to beak

and wait on
no more

blessing with skittered trillings
the handout
of a hand out.

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A Review of

Hawks from Every Angle: How to Identify Raptors in Flight.
Jerry Liguori.
Paperback: Princeton UP, 2005 [Reprinted 2010].
Buy now: [ Amazon ]

Reviewed by Chris Smith.

HAWKS FROM EVERY ANGLE - Jerry LiguoriI have been a bird watcher all my life; my mom has a deep love for birds and when I was a boy, she was always pointing out different kinds of birds to me.  We were never birders in the sense of going on bird watching tours or traveling specifically to see particular birds, but with living on the East Coast while most of our extended family was in the mid-west, we did travel quite a bit – even driving from coast-to-coast in the summer of 1980 – and wherever we went, we were always on the lookout for birds.  Given this informal schooling in birdwatching, there are many birds that I can identity at a glance.  However, I have always struggled to distinguish various types of hawks and other raptors when we see them soaring through the air.  I can say, generally, “That’s a hawk,” but rarely can identify the bird with any more specificity than that.

Thus, I was delighted to stumble upon Jerry Liguori’s superb and helpful book Hawks from Every Angle: How to Identify Raptors in Flight (now available in a new reprint from Princeton University Press).  Although a relatively slim volume, and quite specific in the content on which it focuses, it is a profound and amazing work, especially when one considers that the author has taken all the photographs in the book himself over the course of two decades, collecting shots of all the major raptors in a number of key angles that are crucial for distinguishing species.

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A Green Cornfield
Christina Rossetti

The earth was green, the sky was blue:
I saw and heard one sunny morn
A skylark hang between the two,
A singing speck above the corn;

A stage below, in gay accord,
White butterflies danced on the wing,
And still the singing skylark soared,
And silent sank and soared to sing.

The cornfield stretched a tender green
To right and left beside my walks;
I knew he had a nest unseen
Somewhere among the million stalks.

And as I paused to hear his song
While swift the sunny moments slid,
Perhaps his mate sat listening long,
And listened longer than I did.

 

“Some keep the Sabbath going to church”
Emily Dickinson


Some keep the Sabbath going to Church —
I keep it, staying at Home —
With a Bobolink for a Chorister —
And an Orchard, for a Dome —

Some keep the Sabbath in Surplice —
I just wear my Wings —
And instead of tolling the Bell, for Church,
Our little Sexton — sings.

God preaches, a noted Clergyman —
And the sermon is never long,
So instead of getting to Heaven, at least —
I’m going, all along.

 

“Further in Summer Than the Birds”
Emily Dickinson

Further in Summer than the Birds
Pathetic from the Grass
A minor Nation celebrates
Its unobtrusive Mass.

No Ordinance be seen
So gradual the Grace
A pensive Custom it becomes
Enlarging Loneliness.

Antiquest felt at Noon
When August burning low
Arise this spectral Canticle
Repose to typify

Remit as yet no Grace
No Furrow on the Glow
Yet a Druidic Difference
Enhances Nature now