Thursday, April 26, 2007

The white-throated sparrows will soon leave Baltimore for points north -- this little guy was the last to visit my feeder so far. I'd never had one at my feeder before this year, but when I heard one of them singing in the neighbor's tree, I scattered some seeds on the ground hoping to entice them. It worked, and they quickly learned to eat from the tube feeder, though their preference is still to eat from the ground. I love these little guys! Finch's favorite birds are the fat and somewhat stupid mourning doves who peck about the ground below my feeder looking for dropped seeds - they've benefitted enormously from my sparrow feeding and I've come to enjoy them for their comical gait and posture. Finch is determined to pet one, and crawls determinedly toward them time and again, only to have them fly away at the last possible moment. He laughs at the whistling of their wings as they flutter off, and reaches his baby arms up, as though to gather them to himself. Robin was a pigeon-fancier at much the same age, and loved to chase them along the downtown sidewalks. He also laughed to see and hear them take flight. I am glad and grateful that all of my children have so far shown great love for and interest in the natural world, and that even here in a tired old city, among the soot, broken whiskey bottles, and discarded syringes, we have an abundance of life to nurture and enjoy.

dinner tonight: Spaghetti with Bolognese Sauce and Cucumber Orange Salad, both a la Marcella Hazan

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