Sunday, 31 August 2008

Crazy Bird Music

'autumn vibrates between nows like a crazy musical instrument' Yang Lian, Poem 5, Chapter 1, Concentric Circles

A bird of two songs is the robin,
this song the one of ice and frost
the sole sign of life
in a bare December hedgerow.

But today is still August
and as I trim our hedge
the brambles not yet even ripe
the robin's crazy mis-timed song

is the saddest music in the world.


for Read Write Poem

Yang Lian's collection Concentric Circles is a magical book of collage poetry containing vivid, memorable images in poems that shift meaning with each reading. I'll write a review of it here soon.

17 comments:

Lucy said...

That's so lovely and soulful!

I've often thought that midwinter song is the real reason why they're Christmas birds.

Raven's Wing Poetry said...

I concur with Lucy. This feels haunting to me. You did well with your inspiration (the line from Yang Lian's poem).

-Nicole

polona said...

strikingly beautiful and yes, haunting.

The Weaver of Grass said...

I like this poem. You are quite right - his song is uplifting in Winter but this time of year, when only the robin is singing the is a sad quality - Summer is over and things are dying back.

Janice Thomson said...

Powerful melancholy lines Juliet.
Here our robins fly south for the winter - seeing one in March is a harbinger of Spring's arrival. Also our female is a very dull colour compared to the striking male.
Beautiful write.

Annamari said...

powerful images indeed.
here we are enjoying our last days of riped summer and that crazy robin has to announce winter (I was thinking at my age too)

Maggie May said...

Lovely poem. The robin makes quite a sound for a small bird. The wren is the same! Like your blog BTW.

anthonynorth said...

Beautiful and haunting. And to see and hear a Robin is truly magical. You describe the time perfectly.

gautami tripathy said...

Soulful....

I catch words haphazardly

durablepigments said...

I agree with what's been said earlier about the haunting quality of this piece. I relate to this; our leaves are just starting to turn, after a very wet, gray summer, and it seems impossible that autumn is nearly here already.

twitches said...

I love the melancholy of this. very nice.

christine said...

The pathos of the robin's song is so real in your poem. Great stuff. It was especially poignant to click and listen to it's wee voice.

susan said...

Wow! Honestly, that was my first reaction to your post. Impressed with how you took off from your line of inspiration.

Nathan said...

This is lovely. It's interesting too that, like the previous comment mentioned, where I live the robin is a sign of spring.

AmbiguityLotus said...

How interesting that you didn't say that the nightingale has the saddest music in the world.

I like the lines in stanza 2 and the feeling of being stuck in the seasons throughout the poem.

Thanks for sharing.

one more believer said...

as a gardener i cherish those moments outside.. you caught the timing of late summer early autumn bird's song beautifully... especially so with "...But today is still August and as I trim our hedge.."

Art and Poetry said...

It's very different, poetry about birds is always nice!