japonisme: the nest of rapture

31 March 2011

the nest of rapture


No one says
it anymore,
my darling,
not to the green leaves
in March, not to the stars
backing up each night, certainly

not in the nest
of rapture, who
in the beginning was
an owl, rustling
just after silence, whose

very presence drew
a mob of birds--flickers,
finches, chickadees, five cardinals
to a tree--the way a word
excites its meanings. Who

cooks for you, it calls, Who looks
for you? Sheaf of feathers, chief
of bone, the owl stands
upon the branch, but does he
understand it, think my revel,
my banquet, my tumult,

delight? The Irish have a word
for what can't be
replaced: mavourneen, my
darling, second cousin once
removed of memory, what is not
forgotten, as truth was
defined by the Greeks.

It's the names
on the stones in the cemetery
that ring out like rungs
on a ladder or the past
tense of bells: Nathaniel Joy,
Elizabeth Joy, Amos
Joy and Wilder Joy,

and it all comes down
to the conclusion
of the cardinal: pretty, pretty, pretty
pretty--but pretty what?
In her strip search
of scripture, St. Teresa
was seized, my darling, rapt
amid the chatter
and flutter of well-coiffed

words, the owl
in the shagbark hickory,
and all the attending dangers
like physicians
of the heard.

Angie Estes

From Voice-Over by Angie Estes. Copyright © 2002 by Angie Estes.

so many love the bullfinch! a cross-cultural item of adoration. looks more like the grosbeak we have around here than any of our local finches, but still, who knew? this sweet little offering is dedicated to gerrie at his blog the linosaurus. his blog is the source for the top left image of this post, just part of the ongoing introductions to gerrie's finds in his tireless searches.

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Blogger lotusgreen said...

pardon, please! my poor record-keeping. if you know the artist where i've not listed it, please let me know. thanks!

31 March, 2011 09:32  
Blogger Gerrie said...

I think the third one is not bullfinches but Java rice bird (by Fritz Lang) and the bullfinches (last but one) is bu Hugo Amberg. What a nice ensemble !

31 March, 2011 10:07  
Blogger Yoli said...


31 March, 2011 10:25  
Blogger Unknown said...

the bullfinch is by Hugo Amberg, I believe.

31 March, 2011 12:17  
Blogger lotusgreen said...

thanks to all, and i will make the corrections. really, gerrie, re the lang? they all look so much alike.

and yoli--


31 March, 2011 18:46  
Blogger Gerrie said...

Really !

31 March, 2011 23:23  
Blogger lotusgreen said...

well... i'm sure you're right, but they clearly are all finches, even the grosbeaks!

01 April, 2011 10:00  
Blogger Gerrie said...

yeah, but: some finches are more finches then others, arent they ? Thanks for the nice collection.

01 April, 2011 13:41  
Blogger lotusgreen said...

indeed. as they say, 'a finch in time saves nine,'and of course, "a finch in the hand is worth two in the bush.'

01 April, 2011 15:29  

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