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Poems About Birds

Updated on September 17, 2014

Po-e-tweet

Birds are fascinating and I love poetry. This lens brings the two together . . . .

Gliding on air streams,

travel forever upwards,

on top of the world.

~ David Darbyshire ~

Canada Geese land

on the pond as if eager

to learn ice skating

~ Joseph Kozlowski ~

Source

The Redbreast Chasing the Butterfly

by William Wordsworth

Art thou the bird whom Man loves best,

The pious bird with the scarlet breast,

Our little English Robin;

The bird that comes about our doors

When Autumn-winds are sobbing?

Art thou the Peter of Norway Boors?

Their Thomas in Finland,

And Russia far inland?

The bird, that by some name or other

All men who know thee call their brother,

The darling of children and men?

Could Father Adam open his eyes

And see this sight beneath the skies,

He'd wish to close them again.

-If the Butterfly knew but his friend,

Hither his flight he would bend;

And find his way to me,

Under the branches of the tree:

In and out, he darts about;

Can this be the bird, to man so good,

That, after their bewildering,

Covered with leaves the little children,

So painfully in the wood?

What ailed thee, Robin, that thou could'st pursue

A beautiful creature,

That is gentle by nature?

Beneath the summer sky

From flower to flower let him fly;

'Tis all that he wishes to do.

The cheerer Thou of our in-door sadness,

He is the friend of our summer gladness:

What hinders, then, that ye should be

Playmates in the sunny weather,

And fly about in the air together!

His beautiful wings in crimson are drest,

A crimson as bright as thine own:

Would'st thou be happy in thy nest,

O pious Bird! whom man loves best,

Love him, or leave him alone!

A Bird

by Emily Dickinson

A bird came down the walk,

He did not know I saw;

He bit an angleworm in halves

And ate the fellow, raw.

And then he drank a dew

From a convenient grass,

And then hopped sidewise to the wall

To let a beetle pass.

Bookshelf - Anthology of Bird Poetry

Bright Wings: An Illustrated Anthology of Poems About Birds
Bright Wings: An Illustrated Anthology of Poems About Birds

In this beautiful collection of poems and paintings, Billy Collins, former U.S. poet laureate, joins with David Allen Sibley, America's foremost bird illustrator, to celebrate the winged creatures that have inspired so many poets to sing for centuries. From Catullus and Chaucer to Robert Browning and James Wright, poets have long treated birds as powerful metaphors for beauty, escape, transcendence, and divine expression. (amazon)

 

From the Shore

by: Carl Sandburg

A lone gray bird,

Dim-dipping, far-flying,

Alone in the shadows and grandeurs and tumults

Of night and the sea

And the stars and storms.

Out over the darkness it wavers and hovers,

Out into the gloom it swings and batters,

Out into the wind and the rain and the vast,

Out into the pit of a great black world,

Where fogs are at battle, sky-driven, sea-blown,

Love of mist and rapture of flight,

Glories of chance and hazards of death

On its eager and palpitant wings.

Out into the deep of the great dark world,

Beyond the long borders where foam and drift

Of the sundering waves are lost and gone

On the tides that plunge and rear and crumble.

Source

Weird-Bird

by Shel Silverstein

Birds are flyin' south for winter.

Here's the Weird-Bird headin' north,

Wings a-flappin', beak a-chatterin',

Cold head bobbin' back 'n' forth.

He says, "It's not that I like ice

Or freezin' winds and snowy ground.

It's just sometimes it's kind of nice

To be the only bird in town."

The Oriole

by Andrew Downing

In robe of orange, and of black,

With mellow music in his throat,

Our fairest summer bird is back

From southern woods and fields remote.

Beneath the shading, glossy leaves

The sunset gold upon his breast--

The restless, little toiler weaves

His hanging wonder of a nest!

And, as I watch him, flashing there,

My fancy deems the oriole

A wand'ring blossom of the air,

Endowed with wings, and voice, and soul!

Bookshelf - Identifying Birds

How to Identify Birds (An Audubon Handbook)
How to Identify Birds (An Audubon Handbook)

Contains over 700 color photographs alongside complementary text coverage of all North American species of birds and classifications that enable the reader to become a master at the art of field identification. Habitat maps. Handy small format, perfect for tucking in a backpack. (amazon)

 

A Mocking-Bird

by Witter Bynner

An arrow, feathery, alive,

He darts and sings--

Then with a sudden skimming dive

Of striped wings

He finds a pine and, debonair,

Makes with his mate

All birds that ever rested there

Articulate.

The whisper of a multitude

Of happy wings

Is round him, a returning brood,

Each time he sings.

Though heaven be not for them or him

Yet he is wise

And tiptoes daily on the rim

Of paradise.

Lapwings

by Alison Brackenbury

They were everywhere. No. Just God or smoke

Is that. They were the backdrop to the road,

My parents' home, the heavy winter fields

From which they flashed and kindled and uprode

The air in dozens. I ignored them all.

"What are they?" "Oh - peewits - " Then a hare flowed,

Bounded the furrows. Marriage. Child. I roamed

Round other farms. I only knew them gone

When, out of a sad winter, one returned.

I heard the high mocked cry "Pee - wit , " so long

Cut dead. I watched it buckle from vast air

To lure hawks from its chicks. That time had gone.

Gravely, the parents bobbed their strip of stubble.

How had I let this green and purple pass?

Fringed, plumed heads (full name, the crested plover)

Fluttered. So crowned cranes stalk Kenyan grass.

Then their one child, their anxious care, came running,

Squeaked along each furrow, dauntless, daft.

Did I once know the story of their lives?

Do they migrate from Spain? Or coasts' cold run?

And I forgot their massive arcs of wing.

When their raw cries swept over, my head spun

With all the brilliance of their black and white

As though you cracked the dark and found the sun.

crystalgazer01 / photobucket

Bird Watcher

by Robert Service

In Wall Street once a potent power,

And now a multi-millionaire

Alone within a shady bower

In clothes his valet would not wear,

He watches bird wings bright the air.

The man who mighty mergers planned,

And oil and coal kinglike controlled,

With field-glasses in failing hand

Spies downy nestlings five days old,

With joy he could not buy for gold.

Aye, even childlike is his glee;

But how he crisps with hate and dread

And shakes a clawlike fist to see

A kestrel hover overhead:

Though he would never shoot it dead.

Although his cook afar doth forage

For food to woo his appetite,

The old man lives on milk and porridge

And now it is his last delight

At eve if one lone linnet lingers

To pick crushed almonds from his fingers.

Source

The Dalliance of Eagles

by Walt Whitman

Skirting the river road, (my forenoon walk, my rest,)

Skyward in air a sudden muffled sound, the dalliance of the eagles,

The rushing amorous contact high in space together,

The clinching interlocking claws, a living, fierce, gyrating wheel,

Four beating wings, two beaks, a swirling mass tight grappling,

In tumbling turning clustering loops, straight downward falling,

Till o'er the river pois'd, the twain yet one, a moment's lull,

A motionless still balance in the air, then parting, talons losing,

Upward again on slow-firm pinions slanting, their separate diverse flight,

She hers, he his, pursuing.

Source

Marsh Birds

by Marilyn Peretti

Marsh Beds

Birds in branches

for the night

do not mock

long legged cranes.

Gravity pulls us all

to our own beds

for respite from

day's winged work.

Trees of leaf

do not hug marshes

but leave them to the sky,

to wane and swell,

like black wet mirrors,

waters soaked with beds of

grasses, shallow, where

tall cranes stand, and sleep.

The Red-wing Blackbird

by William Carlos Williams

The wild red-wing black-

bird croaks frog-

like though more shrill

as the beads of

his head blaze over the

swamp and the o-

dors of the swamp vodka

to his nostrils

mciemily / photobucket

Source

Redbirds

by Sara Teasdale

Redbirds, redbirds,

Long and long ago,

What a honey-call you had

In hills I used to know;

Redbud, buckberry,

Wild plum-tree

And proud river sweeping

Southward to the sea,

Brown and gold in the sun

Sparkling far below,

Trailing stately round her bluffs

Where the poplars grow -

Redbirds, redbirds,

Are you singing still

As you sang one May day

On Saxton's Hill?

Bird

by Pablo Neruda

It was passed from one bird to another,

the whole gift of the day.

The day went from flute to flute,

went dressed in vegetation,

in flights which opened a tunnel

through the wind would pass

to where birds were breaking open

the dense blue air -

and there, night came in.

When I returned from so many journeys,

I stayed suspended and green

between sun and geography -

I saw how wings worked,

how perfumes are transmitted

by feathery telegraph,

and from above I saw the path,

the springs and the roof tiles,

the fishermen at their trades,

the trousers of the foam;

I saw it all from my green sky.

I had no more alphabet

than the swallows in their courses,

the tiny, shining water

of the small bird on fire

which dances out of the pollen.

Bird Sanctuary

by Robert Service

Between the cliff-rise and the beach

A slip of emerald I own;

With fig and olive, almond, peach,

cherry and plum-tree overgrown;

Glad-watered by a crystal spring

That carols through the silver night,

And populous with birds who sing

Gay madrigals for my delight.

Some merchants fain would buy my land

To build a stately pleasure dome.

Poor fools! they cannot understand

how pricelessly it is my home!

So luminous with living wings,

So musical with feathered joy . . .

Not for all pleasure fortune brings,

Would I such ecstasy destroy.

A thousand birds are in my grove,

Melodious from morn to night;

My fruit trees are their treasure trove,

Their happiness is my delight.

And through the sweet and shining days

They know their lover and their friend;

So I will shield in peace and praise

My innocents unto the end.

Bird Songs - Book and Audio CD

Common Birds and Their Songs (Book and Audio CD)
Common Birds and Their Songs (Book and Audio CD)

This book-audio package provides a unique introduction to fifty of the most familiar birds of North America and the songs they sing. Each bird is described in vivid detail - its natural history, habitat, voice, range, and field marks - and illustrated in stunning color photographs. The audio CD features original high-quality field recordings of each bird's songs and calls, which are track-coded for easy access. Common Birds and Their Songs will be valuable to anyone interested in birds, from beginner to expert. It's the perfect gift for any birder - or anyone with a bird feeder. (amazon)

 
Source

Birds Appearing In A Dream

by Michael Collier

One had feathers like a blood-streaked koi,

another a tail of color-coded wires.

One was a blackbird stretching orchid wings,

another a flicker with a wounded head.

All flew like leaves fluttering to escape,

bright, circulating in burning air,

and all returned when the air cleared.

One was a kingfisher trapped in its bower,

deep in the ground, miles from water.

Everything is real and everything isn't.

Some had names and some didn't.

Named and nameless shapes of birds,

at night my hand can touch your feathers

and then I wipe the vernix from your wings,

you who have made bright things from shadows,

you who have crossed the distances to roost in me.

Source

Comments Welcome

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    • indigoj profile image

      Indigo Janson 7 years ago from UK

      I'm enjoying this poetry (and art) series! Great work on this one. :)

    • WildFacesGallery profile image

      Mona 7 years ago from Iowa

      Once again another beautiful lens combining poetry and images. :) Very nice. 5*

    • Amy Fricano profile image

      Amy Fricano 7 years ago from WNY

      bird beautiful!

    • Grasmere Sue profile image

      Sue Dixon 6 years ago from Grasmere, Cumbria, UK

      What a lovely idea for a lens, combinign poems, birds and art. Blessed by an Angel and added to my angel lens

    • JakTraks profile image
      Author

      Jacqueline Marshall 6 years ago from Chicago area

      @Grasmere Sue: Thank you. I appreciate it!

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      This lovely poetry, and a very beautiful presentation.

    • MyFairLadyah2 profile image

      MyFairLadyah2 6 years ago

      A delightful lens with lovely photos too!

    • ZenandChic profile image

      Patricia 6 years ago

      More good poems!

    • EdTecher profile image

      Heidi Reina 6 years ago from USA

      Beautiful pictures + beautiful poems = bird lover's delight. Blessed by a SquidAngel ~

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Thank- you you have helped me so much with my bird anthology for my english project. You have some great poems here and the pictures and videos are so relevant :)

    • WorldVisionary3 profile image

      WorldVisionary3 6 years ago

      Wow, very interesting! I never realized there were so many poems about birds!

    • David Stone1 profile image

      David Stone 5 years ago from New York City

      You were right. Perfect combination. Birds seem poetic by nature as well as musical.

    • sushilkin lm profile image

      sushilkin lm 5 years ago

      Thanks for your knowledge sharing on Squidoo!! Nice Lens !!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      What an awesome lens! I love birds and I love poetry (and I love Shel Silverstein). I am so glad I found this. Bookmarked.

    • Diana Wenzel profile image

      Renaissance Woman 5 years ago from Colorado

      A lovely combination of poetry and images. My favorite was the Neruda poem. As a bird-lover, I found this lens to be a beautiful collection of winged delight.

    • reflectionhaiku profile image

      reflectionhaiku 5 years ago

      The poems and the pictures are both stunning to read and see. Thanks for sharing this -

    • efriedman profile image

      efriedman 5 years ago

      Beautiful visual and word images in the poems about birds. I will link to this on my Brown Pelicans lens.

    • marlene3 profile image

      marlene3 5 years ago

      Beautiful lens. Great job & Thumbs up!!!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I loved the selections of pictures and poems. They are truly mesmerizing. If there is an option to chose one poem in this collection I will choose Bird by Pablo Neruda.

    • profile image

      Thug_Poet 5 years ago

      Great poems! I liked them a lot.

    • profile image

      candidaabrahamson 5 years ago

      As a bird-lover and poetry-lover myself, I enjoyed your lens immensely. A big thumbs-up to it!

    • Chocolatealchemy profile image

      Chocolatealchemy 5 years ago from London, United Kingdom

      Wow what a fabulous Lens you've created - I love it. thanks for sharing all these lovely poems you've collected.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Help! During an educational event I recently attended, someone read a poem about a flock of small birds (on the shore? at a lake?) that were being buffeted by the wind of a sudden storm. The smaller birds sought and were given shelter by a group of larger birds (geese?) until the rain and wind had passed. Can anyone help me identify it? It was a contemporary (20th Century) poem, I believe. Thanks for the help.

    • Gypzeerose profile image

      Rose Jones 4 years ago

      Very nice indeed - pinned on both my poetry and my bird board so I can come back and review it. William Carlos Williams - you didn't run away from the big guns.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      wow amazing........ super poem about birds

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      very nice poems keep it up

    • profile image

      aussiejon 4 years ago

      I love all your animal poems, keep sharing them :)

    • RandySturridge profile image

      RandySturridge 4 years ago

      A very interesting lens. I was unaware that there were so many prominent poets that wrote about birds. I am a huge fan of Sara Teasdale. Her poetry is modern and great to read over and over again.

      I am relatively new to squidoo and have two lenses that I would love for you to look over and let me know how they speak to you. It is my own work and I have plenty more to come. The lens' are: "My Poetry Corner" and "Lost Love Poems" If you've ever a second to spare please do pop on over and let me know if you think what I wrote is worth sharing. Thank's a bundle. Great lens.

    • bluebird profile image

      bluebird 11 months ago

      Surely enjoyed this! Thanks for remembering birds! After enjoying a nest of bluebirds in my backyard, watching them anxiously awaiting food from busy mom and dad, they flew the coop and now I am lonesome again. They were such fun. My! how quickly they grew up, just like our children, right?

      Thanks again! It was great. Oh, I found this site as I did a word search for Robert Service. He is one amazing poet and I've been enjoying his works for many years.

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