Wednesday, April 26, 2006

The Conference-call of the Birds     [rubai-limerick-whimsy]

a bulbul & a turbledove
    were dining in the park
a sparrow fluttered by & said
    she'd flown in for a lark
a hummingbird was humming
a woodpecker was drumming
a whooperwill was whooping but
    a blackbird's mood was dark

the bulbul & the turbledove
    were growing thick as thieves
some mockingbird-ventriloquist
    was lurking in the eves
an owl of course was hooting
a bluejay was rebooting
the turtle asked the bulbul why
    the rose-cliche so grieves?


Blogger Apoplexy said...

I suggest that if you read Jhumpa Lahiri, you start with "The Namesake" and not "interpreter of maladies".

Wed Apr 26, 10:26:00 AM PDT  
Blogger Apoplexy said...

And thanks for dropping is this ur blog..or the other ones?

Wed Apr 26, 10:29:00 AM PDT  
Blogger Archana Bahuguna said...

:-) Thats a sweet poem. In fact just recently I have started going for these nature walks, just around my house and am surprised to see the variety of birds and their calls. It is so refreshing. I wonder why I never did that before.

Wed Apr 26, 02:55:00 PM PDT  
Blogger david raphael israel said...

Apo --
thanks for the book particulars; yes this is my blog per se; (the others I contribute to occasionally).

Arch -- thanks. I think it's a bit stranger of a poem than may seem at first blush, or anyway expressive of odd mood. At least many of these birds I know with own ears, though not all, alas. I've never heard a nightengale (bulbul) as best I can recall. Should be rectified.


Wed Apr 26, 08:52:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Archana Bahuguna said...

My bad. I read it again. It is sad. Very well expressed.

When I read it the first time, I think I was more excited about the fact that there was a poem on birds and I had been hearing and watching them for some time. So I missed the core completely.

Thu Apr 27, 01:14:00 PM PDT  
Blogger david raphael israel said...

you know I'm afraid this poem may be the verse equivalent of a trick question; -- that is, I'd be reluctant to say if it has a core idea. Generally I've some notion I know what I'm doing or saying, when writing a poem, but not entirely always; this was more (as I said) "odd" and kind of "imaginative/instinctual" in the writing. It sits here perhaps partly for me to determine if it's worth anything, or not.

I think it more vaguely hints as wisps of meanings, than actually meaning something. An experiment, in short.

An advantage might be that readers may discover one meaning or another.

(I share your feeling about the bird poetry, and part of that sense is here, despite some fragmenting of it.)

Or: perhaps at a future point I'll figure out what it means!

Some poems I write may have hard-to-get-at meanings that I'm yet intuitively rather clear on; but in this case, really it's more of a vague whimsy. The feelings underlying the poem are perhaps kind of fouled up.

Anyway, I'll cut my losses & conclude this excuse for an explanation.
Thanks for reading.


Thu Apr 27, 04:30:00 PM PDT  
Blogger david raphael israel said...

ps: the title (more as an amusement than in a serious way) alludes to the allegorical poem (whose title one has, if subtracting the "-call") from classical Persian literature, by Fariduddin Attar; -- rather overbearing an allusion. But all characters in that tale are birds.

Thu Apr 27, 04:32:00 PM PDT  

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