Saturday, May 28, 2011

Almanac For Moderns: Bringing Back The Warbler

May Twenty-Ninth

Here is May, gone by, and with it will go something fresh and joyful that, I suppose, will not pass this way again in all the year. Of all months it is the floweriest. Never again, in this twelvemonth, will there be so many bird voices ringing out. There is little worth while, in any month, of which May does not have at least a little share, unless you are one of those robustious souls made of objectionably more solid stuff who prefer your trees naked, your flowers snow-covered and your birds sparrowish and cheepy. 

Myself, I am all for the joyful, the colored and carnival. May coaxes even the reluctant oaks to leaf, and brings back to us the very last warbler and tanager and oriole and cuckoo. It combines the first and best of the summer splendor with the innocence of the flora of April. 

Now is the moment when the woods begin to fill up with golden sundrops, and the banks are winey with the odor of wild grape and honeysuckle. The country lanes are a bower of flowering brambles, arching out on their prickly canes, spilling whiteness. Now all familiar spirits give voice in the downpouring of sunlight, the song-sparrow and the goldfinch and bluebird and all such small and merry choristers.

More information on our Almanac For Moderns project and the work of Donald Culross Peattie can be found here.