Phila Rogers <philajane6@...>
For as many times in the last three days, I have gone up to the lot opposite the Botanic Garden in search of the Varied Thrushes. I'm beginning to feel like a stalker rather than a birdwatcher hoping to slip quietly into thrushs' domain for even the briefest look.
Today, instead of pacing slowly up and down the slope, I decided on the meditative "sit," not so easy to do with the busy park road feet away on one side of the glade and the smack of golf balls just over the cyclone fence behind me. I tried to ignore the damp seeping through my thin pants as I breathed deep the fragrant' bay-scented air. A cold breeze, blowing foggy fragments over the ridge, shifted the leafy pattern of sun and shade, making a soft rustling sound. I heard chickadees and the chitter of Pygmy Nuthatches.
I got up and moved upslope, standing this time, listening and trying to detect in the shade any signs of movement. Nothing. My dim eyes were clearly not up to the task. I could image the secretive bird lifting -- almost levitating -- on half-opened wings from the ground to a low perch -- a slender, silhouette poised motionless with a tilted head.
Defeated, I retreated down the slope when I heard a single, long drawn-out flute note which could have come from a few feet away or from a greater distance. I knew they were there.
Maybe that should be enough.
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