An English In Kentucky


















March 27th 2010    Tim Candler

    The Close Mockingbird has in his repertoire the call of Meadowlarks.    I heard him singing happily from a garden fencepost.  Then a confusion arose. 

    We have both struggled through the colder times.  He amongst the Alatus berries and I snug in layers of clothing that make gracefulness difficult to accomplish while moving.   For me at least the end of March has produced no interloper.  But for the Close Mockingbird there is mirror image of himself who now joins him regularly in favorite places. 

    My own instinct was to assume this mirror image belonged to a girl Mockingbird.  And in that way of imagination I saw courtly behavior.   She was attentive and he was a boy.  Now I am beginning to think that the Close Mockingbird owns caddishness.    

    She joined him on an adjacent fencepost, and he growled at her in the way that Mockingbird's do.   When she purred back, he looked at me and I did not see that shrug of acceptance which invites the harmony of a shared nest.  Instead, he left her there, flew into the tall Maple and sang a Cherubino aria that cut into her heart as well as mine.

     I couldn't join him high in those branches, but when she did, he flew away.   It's possible he doesn't like her.   Meanwhile the Western Mockingbird is calling sweetly from that corner of territory which is a dying Sycamore.  The western Mockingbird has no Meadowlark in him.  He is Warbler and Cardinal and the gentler songs of Wren and sometimes he sounds like a frustrated Pileated Woodpecker.

    Much more of this from the Close Mockingbird and again he'll be keeping me awake by singing all night because in June and July that is what bachelor Mockingbirds become.

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