UP FROM THE EGG:
The Confessions of a Nuthatch Avoider
Bird watchers top my honors list.
I aimed to be one, but I missed.
Since I'm both myopic and astigmatic,
My aim turned out to be erratic.
And I, bespectacled and binocular,
Exposed myself to comment jocular.
We don't need to much birdlore, do we,
To tell a flamingo from a towhee;
Yet I cannot, and never will,
Unless the silly birds stand still.
And there's no enlightenment so obscure
As ornithological literature.
Is yon strange creature a common chickadee,
Or a migrant alouette from Picardy?
You rush to consult your Nature guide
And inspect the gallery inside,
But a bird in the open never looks
Like its picture in the birdie books -
That's a redtail? W.T.F...?
Or if it once did, it has changed its plumage,
And plunges you back into ignorant gloomage.
That is why I sit here growing old by inches,
Watching the clock instead of finches,
The most ordinary bird is still an extraordinary thing.
But sometimes I visualize in my gin
The Audubon that I audubin.
- Ogden Nash
We made through 2012, and get to start our new years lists on Tuesday. What were the highlights of this past year for you? What's on your wish list for Lucky '13?
More Nash in the comments:
"The Duck", via Kestrel
"The Grackle" and an observation, via Polly Syllabic
"The Seagull", also via Polly Syllabic