Welcome to the 49th edition of I and the Bird, the carnival for bloggers who love birds. I’m calling this edition — with a nod to my fellow Pennsylvanian Rob Fergus — the Wordchaser. I’m less of a birder than a bird appreciator (for street cred, I can only point to my vice-presidency in the local Audubon chapter), but I chase down poems the way a life-lister chases birds.
Past editions of I and the Bird have showcased the host’s own creativity, with sometimes extraordinary results. But this time I want to turn it around and focus on the linguistic creativity of the contributors themselves. Poems, like birds, are everywhere; it’s just a matter of training ourselves to recognize them — a metaphor here, an alliterative passage there, and something lovely dark and deep lurking just beyond. And with a little bit of editing, the English language naturally resolves into a rough iambic pentameter…
Each line in the “found poem” below is a link to the post I lifted it from. I’ve altered nothing but the punctuation, and I’ve included an audio version for those who may have trouble hearing the poetry at first. I’m hoping the excerpts will read like riddles, enticing you to click through and discover their original contexts.
Little cotton balls above their legs;
I knew instantly what it was! There was no mistaking
I will spot snipe both close and in good light,
It was dusk by that time and no hope of a decent photo.
Sources: Julie Zickefoose, Thomasburg Walks, Trevor’s Birding, Living the Scientific Life, Gulf Coast Bird Observatory, Drawing the Motmot, The Birdchaser, Bell Tower Birding, Richard Guthrie, Bird Treatment and Learning Center, The Egret’s Nest, Birds Etcetera, The Hawk Owl’s Nest, Ben Cruachan Blog, The Nemesis Bird, The Flatbush Gardener, Fragments from Floyd, 10,000 Birds, Marcia Bonta, The House and other Arctic musings, lovely dark and deep, A DC Birding Blog, Cup O’ Books, Gavan Central, Tick Magnet, Antshrike’s Bird Blog, Bird Ecology Study Group, Wrenaissance Reflections, Dzonoqua’s Whistle.
Dave Bonta (bio) crowd-sources his problems by following his gut, which he shares with 100 trillion of his closest microbial friends — a close-knit, symbiotic community comprising several thousand species of bacteria, fungi, and protozoa. In a similarly collaborative fashion, all of Dave’s writing is available for reuse and creative remix under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. For attribution in printed material, his name (Dave Bonta) will suffice, but for web use, please link back to the original. Contact him for permission to waive the “share alike” provision (e.g. for use in a conventionally copyrighted work).