Thursday, May 13, 2010

of Birds and Bonaventure

Vestiges, Bonaventure says we are surrounded by vestiges. Open your eyes to creation and you will see living signs that God has been there. Contemplate the nature of the creature and you will start your journey to God.

I dig birds, so when I read chapter two of Bonaventure three weeks ago just before I went to church my mind went to...

leaping for joy when I first saw a Pileated Woodpecker... I was in NC with a great bunch of friends, who went to the mountains for spring break.

a flock of Bobolinks that said, "hey look at us, " after not one had shown their face to me since the first spring of birdwatching when I was 13... I was alone at Valley Forge on my 33rd birthday.

a yellow-bellied woodpecker that said. "hey, would you rather enjoy my beauty or have your job cause your head to explode,"... I chose beauty.

The Gold Finches who perch on spires of anise hyssop and say, "thanks, for not having a grass lawn"

and the memories kept coming and coming and coming. And I wanted to share them with my group of friends at Holy Trinity, but we canceled that Monday and we never got to Bonaventure the next Monday, but three days ago... I told some of my stories...

and now in three days I have more

the catbird that made a trip to the garbage cans more interesting.

the friend who I gave a description of a bird as we pulled into her driveway, and 20 seconds later I turned the pages to show her a Rose-Breasted Grossbeak in my bird book.

another friend that said "what" as we stood outside at work then directed his eyes to the words I said, so that he could see a White-breasted Nuthatch on a Silver Maple.

and the robins that attacked a squirrel in the front yard across the street this morning as I walked to my car.

15 years ago I set out to see a hundred birds by the last day of the school year. The day I reached my goal, I got to work for a message to call Mosaic Woman. She told me that my grandmother had died. As I flew home to Pennsylvania, I read that Emily Dickinson once wrote that the dead visit us through birds.

Today I walked through Lansdale with Mosaic Woman, who now after walking through half her life with me, shows me birds. and my eyes are directed to a hawk perched on a church tower above the door where I returned to a journey with God.


  1. OH MY! I must send this post to my cousin, Sal, whose mother visits her in flocks of gold finches!

  2. I've never been an enthusiast of birdwatching in particular, but do enjoy being out in nature and just taking in "the big picture". We used to have an egret? a heron? a member of the plumed, stalk the nearby creek bunch that could be found on either side of the small concrete bridge over which we pass to reach the main road. I do not recall seeing any that big in this area of Kentucky during childhood years......

  3. Christin... Margaret pointed out Gold Finches this week!

    Jim... don't think God cares which creatures bring us closer to him, birds, dogs, dragonflies... was the heron a slate blue color?


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