“Why Read a Book?”
Two of my pleasures, in one poem: reading and looking at birds. Oh man. Not sure I’d always choose birds over books, but on these beautiful fall days, when the sun is warm and the birds are migrating (and especially when I have the chance to get outside and band them), birds definitely win out. Though I do love to lose myself in the words of others, it’s hard to ignore the amazing poetry flying overhead and all around.
Why read a book when there are birds
Printing clear and breezy words
Upon the cloud’s white pages? When
A busy robin and a wren
Are syllables of ecstasy!
A line of swallows on a tree,
Or wire, is a sentence, long
And sweeping. A flying flock’s a strong
Paragraph, while in the air
Is quilled elaborately and rare
Illumined manuscript in gold
And green. And say, what book can hold
More fascination and delight
Than birds in migratory flight?
— Collette M. Burns