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Monday, 29 April 2019

Poetry Monday: Robin Red Breast

It's Poetry Monday, and this week's topic, provided by Delores, is . . . ROBIN RED BREAST.

Join Delores, Mother Owl and me in writing about one of the better known birds of North America and Europe.

You can leave your poem in the comments, or, if you post on your blog, please leave a comment so we can find you.

*****

In doing a bit of research for this week's poem, I found that the original "robin red breast" is the European robin, a member of the Old World flycatcher family.

It looks quite different from the red-breasted American robin that we see in North America, which is a member of the thrush family. Where the European robin is tiny and cute, the American robin is more robust and stocky.


European robin


North American robin (male)

(Both pictures scavanged, with thanks, from Wikipedia)



Last week I saw our first robins, who have just returned from warmer parts of the continent, and happily I was able to take a couple of pictures. I wanted to capture how nondescript the back of this bird is, and how bright its front is. Hopefully you can see that here:

Back:

He blends in very well with last year's dead leaves and dormant weed-lawn (which is different from a grass-lawn, as you probably guessed).


Front:

It's so much easier to see him from the front (and even though there IS some green in this shot, it's not grass either, it's moss. Tsk tsk. The Donkey household needs a big bag of grass seed and about a month of vacation time to plant a new back lawn.)



And here is my offering for this week:


Oh-Oh

O sturdy little robin
With chest so bright and red
Why do you stand and stare around
And tilt your little head?

O now I think I know why
And knowing makes me squirm
As suddenly you wield your beak
And grab a big fat worm

*****

Why, yes, I am a bit squeamish about watching Nature's children eat other Nature's children, when the "others" are still moving around. Bleh. But . . . everybody's gotta eat.

I almost forgot. Here's an audio clip for the European robin, ten minutes' worth (!) if you like :)



And here's an audio clip for the North American robin, clocking in at one minute forty seconds:



And that's all I have to say about robins 😀


Wishing everyone a great week, with more of the birdsong and less of the eating-live-prey kinds of situations . . .

It's my turn to suggest a topic for next week, so here it is:  SHOES . . . . . .

Good luck!




42 comments:

Elephant's Child said...

Our robins are different yet again.
Our Scarlet Robin which you can see here is a particularly dramatic beastie.

River said...

I had no idea there were two types of Robins, I've always imagined the tiny European ones winging their way around your country.

baili said...

Lovely post dear Jenny :)

i absolutely love this little piece of joy but i used to see them in winters only in my native town not here

so true these sweet songs are worth listening in serenity :)

thank you for cherishing my day my friend!

like always your poem is cheery and wise i must say

observing nature is source of learning which offer variety to thoughts

you chose what you felt

laws of nature are both beautiful and cruel !

hope you are feeling perfectly fine now dear Jenny and your coughing is gone hopefully !

best wishes ,lots of love and hugs!

dinthebeast said...

Thanks for those audio clips, there are a pair of robins that hang around our back yard sometimes and they do sound just like that.

-Doug in Oakland

Charlotte (MotherOwl) said...

I did not know that Robins were that different. But don't let those beady eyes lead you astray. Our Robin is just as bloodthirsty as his American cousin. I like your poem. The last line is not totally a surprise as you make a nice build up, but it is still a twist.

Unknown said...

An absolute ripper poem. Sweet to murder in two fell stanzas.

Starting Over, Accepting Changes - Maybe said...

One of the most inspiring sights in late winter is the robin. He gives us hope that spring is almost here and the cold, nasty weather will soon be behind us. Of course, this is not necessarily the truth, but we want to believe and have hope for better days. I have found that the Goldfinch to be more honest and doesn’t show his yellow feathers until the word ‘warm’ is mentioned.

Marie Smith said...

Love your poem! I haven’t seen any robins yet.

only slightly confused said...

Nice job Jennie.....somehow it doesn't bother me to see a robin horking down a worm....I don't like worms much lol.

Red said...

Our robins are very cheerful at this time. During the worst part of our storm this week I heard a robin just turning it on.

jenny_o said...

Oh, he is a striking fellow! Thank you so much, EC. I was watching for a reference to robins in your part of the world while I read about other robins, but either there was no reference or I missed it. I'm glad you filled the knowledge gap!

jenny_o said...

And see Elephant's Child's comment, above!

jenny_o said...

Thank you, baili - and I am intrigued to know you have these birds also! They do have sweet songs; I love to hear them in early morning. I am still coughing but feeling so much better than before. I hope you are, too. Hugs :)

jenny_o said...

They have a lovely liquid song, I find. A rounded, full voice! Very pretty.

jenny_o said...

They have to be bloodthirsty, don't they, if they want to survive!

jenny_o said...

Ha ha! You got it, Andrew :D

jenny_o said...

Ha ha - you're right! The robins here are often wading through late snows :) I hope you are seeing Goldfinches soon, Arleen.

jenny_o said...

Maybe that last push across the Strait is just too much until they rest, Marie :)

jenny_o said...

Ha ha! You beast! lol

jenny_o said...

Maybe he was asking for some supper, or cursing the white stuff! lol

messymimi said...

They are certainly bright and cheery from the front, and i'm not much on watching them catch worms either. When others went fishing, i always felt badly for the worm.

My poetic offering, such as it is, can be found here.

Joanne Noragon said...

My cat came on the run for the robins.

Martha said...

I love these birds. They are so adorable. I'm not able to watch them grab and gobble up the worms, but I do understand that they need to eat. I have been known to bury exposed worms in soil to save their lives when I'm working in the garden and a robin is snooping around :)

jenny_o said...

I loved your reference today to the song! Great job :)

Do you know, when I was quite young my father would take us fishing. I never had a problem putting the worm on my hook. Now? Nope nope nope

jenny_o said...

As cats do! And I bet it wasn't for the purpose of waving a cheery hello, either :)

jenny_o said...

Aw, Martha - I love your soft-heartedness :) Somebody needs to look out for the worms, right?

Steve Reed said...

I was so surprised when I moved to London and saw a British robin for the first time. I didn't even know what it was! SO different from the American version. Excellent poetic effort, as usual! :)

Steve Reed said...

(I should say NORTH American version. :) )

jenny_o said...

They aren't alike at all, are they? :)

jenny_o said...

Hah! I didn't even notice!

Diane Henders said...

It's hard to believe that two such different birds could share the same name! The European robin is much prettier and a better singer, too; but I still love our North American robins.

And your poem made me chuckle... and shudder. I've seen robins yank out a giant worm, roll it up in a ball, and swallow it, and I can't help imagining how that slimy mouthful must feel going down. Blech!

37paddington said...

Your poem is a song. And happy birthday week, my cosmic twin!

jenny_o said...

NO NO NO I don't want to imagine it but now it's in my brain forever!!!

They roll it up in a ball? I'm going to have to watch for that!

jenny_o said...

And to you, my friend! I hope you have a good one :)

Diane Henders said...

I don't know if they do that with all the worms, but I once saw a robin roll up an 8" long nightcrawler. Maybe s/he was taking it home to the family. And I'm very, very sorry for putting that image in your brain. *shudders*

Cherie said...

bleurgh... it's bedtime and I cant get that thought out of my mind

jenny_o said...

LOL Diane and Cherie :p

kylie said...

I had no idea Australia had robins!

kylie said...

Hang on, it's your birthday? Mine too. It was Tuesday. Have a happy birthday week, I wish you treats! All the treats!

jenny_o said...

It's tomorrow for me (and 37paddington) - belated Happy Birthday, kylie! I hope we ALL have treats!

Mr. Shife said...

Rockin' robin. I was singing that song in my head while I was reading. Nicely done, jenny_o. Have a fantabulous weekend.

jenny_o said...

I forgot about that tune - another well known robin!

You have a great weekend too.